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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

UMass Boston revises its code of conduct in an attempt to deal with sexual assault

Sexual harassment has been a recurring topic in news recently, and the University of Massachusetts Boston has not let the issue slide by without updating its policies.
This year, students will find significant changes in the revised sections of Student Code of Conduct. The changes are made in an attempt to better deal with sexual misconduct.
The Associate Dean of Students, Mark Jannoni, outlined one of the main purposes of the changes.
“The first thing we wanted to do was to create a clear and transparent code that our students can read, and a legal jargon-free [code] that people can understand.”
No academic policies have been changed; however, new students’ privacy and rights sections have been added, where previously they were practically non-existent. In lieu of the Clery Act and Title IX, the code has been corrected to adhere to federal law issues of gender discrimination and crime disclosure.
Title IX dictates that no person shall, on the basis of gender, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any academic, extracurricular, research, occupational training, or other education program or activity operated by a recipient which receives Federal Financial assistance.
Additionally, Title IX prohibits unwelcome sexual conduct of any nature.
The Clery Act requires colleges and universities across the United States to disclose information about crime on and around their campuses, that schools afford the victims of campus sexual assault certain basic rights, and has provisions in dealing with registered sex offender notifications and campus emergency response, respectively.
Furthermore, the university takes all acts and hints of sexual harassment or assault seriously, and makes sure that the victim of such misconduct should always be treated with prompt medical and emotional treatment and support.
A victim of sexual harassment or assault should go, as soon as possible, to the Office of the Department of Public Safety, which is located in the Quinn Administration Building, plaza level, next to the Healey Library. The Public Safety officers and sanctioned police officers can assist victims in giving them the options they need to move forward. Privacy is of the utmost importance and is well-respected at UMass Boston.
Escorts are also provided by Public Safety; an individual may go to the office of the Department of Public Safety and request to be escorted to a specific destination on campus by a police officer if they feel threatened or unsafe. This can be requested at any hour, day or night.
Information on the University’s stance on the Clery Act, Title IX, and the University of Massachusetts Boston Student Code of Conduct may be found on the University’s website. The office of the Department of Public Safety will have an Open House from September 15th – 18th, during Public Safety Week.
The previous code, over a decade old, was revised by a committee of students, faculty, staff, the Vice President of Student Government and the Provost Office during a three years process. The new code clarifies various processes of interim suspension, appeals, and hearings. In addition, new definition sections have been added for better understanding of what is expected of all students.