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Feds want better stats on college assaults

WASHINGTON – The Obama administration wants colleges and universities to compile more thorough statistics on stalking, dating violence and domestic violence.

The Education Department announced Thursday it is proposing a rule change to provide a better picture of these problems on campuses.

The change falls under the Clery Act, which requires colleges and universities to report crime statistics on or near their campuses and provide warnings in a timely manner if safety is threatened. Victims’ advocates have said the statistics, as currently compiled, don’t always paint an accurate picture of the extent of sexual crimes on campuses.

“These new rules strengthen schools’ capacity to provide safer college campuses for students and to keep everyone better informed about campus security policies and procedures,” Education Secretary Arne Duncan said.

Among the other proposed rule changes:

• Adding gender identity and national origin as categories of bias under the Clery Act’s definition of hate crimes.

• Strengthening confidentiality protections for victims.

• Requiring colleges and universities to ensure that disciplinary proceedings in these types of cases are “prompt, fair and impartial.”

The public has until July 21 to comment.


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