The Sexual Assault Awareness, Prevention and Adjudication Ad Hoc Task Force released an executive summary showing the University of Toledo’s campuses to be amongst the safest campuses in the state of Ohio with low reports of rape, fondling, statutory rape, domestic violence and stalking.
The summary also ranked UT above average compared to other state universities for student confidence in campus officials to follow formal procedures to address complaints of sexual misconduct, and student confidence in officials to take the necessary steps to protect the person from retaliation.
“These finds confirm UT is doing an excellent job in the prevention of sexual misconduct,” wrote Amy Thompson, co-chair of the SAAPA Ad Hoc Task Force, in an email interview. “Our findings also have helped develop a framework for continuous improvement.”
The SAAPA Ad Hoc Task Force was created this past spring by UT President Sharon Gaber to analyze campus programs, policies, education and prevention of sexual misconduct at UT and compare those results with other institutions, wrote Thompson.
“Our task force was a representative group from experts in the area of sexual misconduct. Their input guided the development of the documents,” wrote Thompson.
The executive summary outlined four themes that showcased both UT’s strengths and weaknesses – comprehensive university-wide efforts, prevention and programming efforts, resource availability and investigation and adjudication.
A total of 27 recommendations were compiled for each theme in the executive summary to improve and build upon existing programs and policies at UT.
“There were several recommendations that our task force have prioritized, such as forming a Title IX committee to implement the recommendations, diversifying our programs and to explore strengthening our alcohol and other drug programs,” wrote Thompson.
The task force also found UT to be very heavy on primary programming during orientation but needs to focus on more evidence-based programing for all students throughout the year, wrote Valerie Walston, co-chair of the SAAPA Ad Hoc Task Force.
Other recommendations listed in the executive summary ranged from the duties of the Title IX committee to protocols and the implementation programs, such as bystander training.
“The safety of our students is a top priority. Every report of sexual misconduct is taken seriously, and we have zero tolerance for any type of abuse,” wrote Gaber in a statement to the UT community. “I look forward to working with the campus to implement the recommendations of the task force to ensure UT continues to be a safe and welcoming environment.”