Washington, DC – Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) President Peter McPherson today issued the following statement regarding the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights’ (OCR) release of “interim guidance” on campus sexual misconduct. OCR also rescinded the previous administration’s guidance.
“APLU is working with our member institutions to carefully study the ‘interim guidance’ issued today by the Department of Education. As the Department initiates rulemaking, APLU will provide comments on campus safety and ensuring fair processes for complainants and respondents.
“Public universities’ top priority is to provide a safe learning, living, and working environment. The success of our public university mission is inextricably tied to a safe campus community. The ‘interim guidance’ issued today in no way changes public universities’ ironclad commitment to campus safety. This is not just a legal obligation; it is a moral one.
“While universities have made great strides including better assessing campus climates and launching evidence-based prevention strategies such as bystander intervention programs, their work is never done. Public universities will continue to build upon these efforts in order to further safe and productive learning environments.”