Six Point Plan to Combat Sexual Assault

February 2014 - Spring 2016

While the action items listed below have been completed, the University of Iowa continues to have a committed team working collaboratively to prevent sexual misconduct and violence, as well as provide support to survivors and hold offenders accountable. There is absolutely no place for these crimes on the UI campus.


Point 1: Crack down on offenders

Goal: To expand existing programs, create new education opportunities for the campus community, and use comprehensive evaluation to maximize the effectiveness of all programming. This work is guided by the UI Comprehensive Education Model.

Point 2: Increase support for survivors

  • Expand long-term support services.
    • Office of the Sexual Misconduct Response Coordinator (OSMRC) facilitates academic accommodations to support success and persistence throughout student’s enrollment.
  • Train every staff member who comes in contact with survivors.
  • Advocate continued federal funding for nurse examiners.
    • Complete
    • Communicated with our congressional offices.
      Provided institutional funding for portion of SANE program.
  • The UI Police Department developed a sexual assault response guarantee for survivors of sexual assault. (April 2015)
  • “Soft space” interview room at UIPD dedicated; designed to decrease stress and anxiety for survivors reporting sexual assault and other crimes to law enforcement. (November 2015)
  • Beginning in spring 2016, University Counseling Services (UCS) implemented 30 minute same-day appointments to speak with a counselor about an immediate crisis, get support, identify coping strategies, and specify next steps toward the resolution of the crisis. These walk-in or scheduled appointments are available every afternoon and provide the UCS a mechanism to increase the number of appointments available and greater agility to respond to students needs by determining which services would be most helpful.

Point 3: Improve prevention and education

  • Add staff for in-person training, workshops, and dialogues.
    • 2.5 FTE funded (1 at RVAP, 1.5 at WRAC). All positions have been filled.
  • The UI Anti-violence Coalition’s Campus Education Subcommittee established four goals to advance comprehensive, evidence-informed prevention education strategies to end interpersonal violence in the campus community.
  • Implement regular campus safety walks to improve lighting and other conditions.
    • President’s Student Advisory Committee on Sexual Misconduct met with representatives from UI Department of Public Safety, UISG, and Facilities Management to discuss the nature and scope of safety walks. The committee agreed safety walks should be completed across multiple dimensions of safety, including but not limited to, sexual misconduct.
      Facilities Management has conducted photometric studies and made lighting upgrades in the following locations:
      • the north side of the Seamans Center along Washington Street
      • the path and bridge that connect Boyd Law Building to the Myrtle Hill parking lot
      • the north side of the College of Public Health Building drive
      • parking lot and sidewalk
      • the areas connecting Parking Lot 13 with the Quadrangle Hall, Hillcrest Hall, Rienow Hall and Pharmacy Building.

      For capital improvement projects, a site survey is conducted prior to design development to identify exterior lighting requirements in accordance with the UI Design Standards. Projects that impact existing exterior lighting are assessed throughout the duration of the project to ensure appropriate and safe lighting conditions are maintained.

  • Authorize funding to expand Night Ride.
    • Complete. Additional van was purchased in March 2014; ridership has nearly doubled.

Point 4: Improve communication

  • Make resource and support information easier to find.
    • Updated internal search function and added more prominent links to OSMRC and other safety and support resources from the UI Homepage.
  • Improve information on key web pages.
    • Added more prominent action links and contact information to OSMRC site and added additional information to UI police site.
  • Improve language of our Timely Warning emails.
    • Revised language to include a “trigger warning” to alert survivors and stronger language about potential consequences for people who commit sexual offenses.
    • In August 2015, updated to include suggestions from the President’s Student Advisory Committee on Sexual Misconduct:
      • Use a “friendly” opening salutation
      • Have the TW signed by the interim chief of UIPD
      • Move the Clery disclosure statement to the bottom
      • Link to university policy about what constitutes consent
    • Information was also put into easier to digest sections, such as “How to report” and “How to get help.”

Point 5: Add funding

  • Seek every source of dollars to support this plan, including savings from other areas.
    • Awarded FY 2014 Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women $300,000 Campus Grant.
  • Expand overall resources to address the problem of sexual assault.
    • Resources have been added (Nite Ride, SANE program, prevention education)
    • The above FY 2014 grant has helped to 1) bolster coordination of pre-orientation, orientation, and post-orientation prevention education strategies, 2) enhance campus readiness for response to dating violence, 3) advance investigative expertise for campus law enforcement and judicial administrators, 4) promote culturally relevant prevention and intervention strategies and 5) strengthen victim safety and offender accountability through evidence-based sanctioning.

Point 6: Listen more and report back