UM System announces new Title IX changes

New policies require everyone on campus to report any incidents of sexual misconduct.

The UM System announced Tuesday it is making a new round of amendments to policies dealing with sexual violence and discrimination across all four campuses.

Changes to student conduct policies state that students, employees, volunteers and visitors of the universities — except individuals like health care providers and counselors — are now required to report sexual violence or misconduct to a chief student affairs officer or Title IX coordinator.

The system also created a new resolution process for all discrimination claims.

Chancellors are required to appoint at least 10 administrators or staff members to serve as hearing panelists in the Formal Resolution Process. Three trained members of that group of panelists will serve as the Formal Hearing Panel for a specific complaint.

Each chancellor will also appoint a “trained, senior-level administrator” to hear all appeals from the resolution process.

The Board of Curators will hear about the changes and vote whether to ratify them during its Oct. 2-3 session at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

The changes follow UM System President Tim Wolfe’s executive order in April, which designated all system employees with knowledge of sexual harassment against a student as “mandatory reporters.”

Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin also announced in August the hire of new Title IX coordinators and investigator, and the development of a mandatory reporting training program for faculty members.

UM System spokesman John Fougere said the National Center for Higher Education Risk Management was paid $495,000 to advise the system on Title IX policy changes and assess resources that exist on each campus to deal with sexual assault.

Wolfe said in a news release that he hopes the new changes will set an example for other universities across the country.

“It is imperative that our four campuses set a national example in terms of how we address the challenging issue of sexual misconduct, which is exactly the goal of the (UM System),” Wolfe said in the release. “We want other colleges and universities across the nation to look to the University of Missouri as the model of how we prioritize and ensure the safety of all of our students, faculty and staff.”

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