The Quest | The Free Press of Reed College

An Open Letter from the Ad-hoc Committee on Sexual Assault

At the beginning of the fall semester, President Diver appointed an ad-hoc committee on sexual assault. The committee is comprised of students, faculty, and staff. As our work is well underway, and due to recent campus-wide concern about this issue, we wanted to inform the community about the particulars of our mission.

The president charged the committee as follows:

“I have convened the committee in service of our obligation to do all that we can to reduce the likelihood that any Reed student will be the victim of sexual assault, and to ensure that any student who is a victim of sexual assault receives the best possible support.

I request that the committee review and evaluate our current practices for both preventing sexual assault and responding to claims of sexual assault, including the following:

•    Education and outreach: how we educate all members of our community.
•    Response protocols and training: how we respond to incidents that occur.
•    Support services: how we support students and their friends who are impacted.
•    Internal disciplinary procedures: how we prosecute and adjudicate sexual assault
•    Collaboration with external authorities and resources: law enforcement and
victim-service agencies.

In his memorandum, the president asked the committee “to examine the experience of peer institutions and to review what are considered best practices nationally.”

The committee, which includes members of Reed’s sexual assault task force, began its work on the above charges in the fall of 2010. We have conducted detailed interviews with peer institutions to find out about their practices and are currently in the process of evaluating the information gathered in order to make the best possible policy recommendations.

Determining the correct path for dealing with sexual assault incidents and accusations requires considerable thought and discussion of a wide variety of issues relating to prevention, response, and judicial processing. We are confident, however, that we shall have a report with suggested guidelines by the end of the term.

Ariadna García-Bryce, chair, professor of Spanish and humanities
Michael Faletra, associate professor of English and humanities
Gary Granger, director of community safety
Celia Hassan, student, member of sexual assault task force
Alison Kopit, student, member of sexual assault task force
Nora McLaughlin, registrar
Pete Meagher, associate dean of students
Amy Schuckman, interim assistant dean of residence life
Kate Smith, director, health & counseling center
Kyle Webster, assistant director of student activities
Ad Hoc Committee on Sexual Assault

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