I. Call to order
Ruth Jones called to order the meeting of the Campus Committee on Sexual Responsibility & Misconduct (CCSRM) at 3:03PM on October 5, 2015 in Hameetman Science Room #225.
II. Members Attending
The following persons were present: Olivia Sabins; Karla Aguilar; Sara Semal; Ruth Jones; Richard Mora; Brian Erickson; Maureen McRae Goldberg; Jordan Brown; Heather Lukes; Anne Schell; Vivian Garay Santiago, Dana Michels; Marianne Frapwell
A. Members reviewed committee contact list (updates have since been made, new contact list attached)
B. Reviewed committee charge and meeting guidelines
C. Housekeeping items were addressed:
i. Scheduling for the semester: It has been decided that we will keep our meeting time on Monday's from 3:00pm-4:00pm in Hameetman Science Center #225. We ran into scheduling difficulties but this is the time that worked for the majority of the committee members. Our last meeting will be held on Monday, December 7.
ii. If you won’t be able to attend a meeting, email Jordan (firstname.lastname@example.org)
iii. Agendas will be emailed before each meeting, meeting minutes will be shared with the committee and posted on the CCSRM webpage here: http://www.oxy.edu/office-title-ix/campus-committee-sexual-responsibilit...
iv. Google Drive set up – contact Jordan if you have any questions/issues
IV. Introduce Fall 2015 Committee Topics
While the following topics are the bulk of what will be discussed throughout the committee’s work this semester, there will be other important items to be addressed. In particular, sex and gender identity discrimination issues and initiatives will be shared with the committee members to solicit their feedback. The following agenda items were discussed in this meeting in more detail:
A. Sexual Misconduct Policy/Procedure Revisions
a. Recommendations to the policy changes:
During the Summer 2015, the Title IX Office worked on the Sexual Misconduct Policy based on the CCSRM’s suggestions from the Spring 2015 meetings and a compliance review from a law firm. CCSRM members will be able to view the proposed revised, shorter policy by Friday, October 9, in the afternoon.
b. Proposed Community Feedback Plan
• Online feedback: A sub-page will be set up on the Title IX Office website with a link to the current policy, link to the revised policy, and a form for community members to share their thoughts and opinions on the suggested policy revisions with the Title IX Office and CCSRM committee. This webpage will be live next week. This website and opportunity to gather the community’s comments on the policy will be posted until Friday, October 30 in case anyone is unable to attend the two community meetings or would rather not share their opinions in a public space.
• Community meetings: The original meeting dates to discuss the policy revisions with the community were scheduled to be held on 10/27 and 11/3. It was brought up in the meeting that these meetings should be scheduled as early as possible so that the committee can discuss the community’s feedback and work on the policy throughout the duration of the Fall 2015 semester.
It was discussed that community meetings may not be necessary, but it was brought up that offering community meetings in a variety of platforms (in person and online) is important so that all members of the community feel their voices are heard on these important matters.
After the committee meeting, the Title IX Office assessed the office and community calendar and rescheduled the 11/3 meeting to 10/26. The community meeting dates are now scheduled as follows: Monday the 26th from 12pm-1pm in JSC Salsbury/Young and Tuesday, October 27 from 5pm-6pm in Fowler 202.
It was brought up in the meeting that the Title IX Office’s timeline regarding making revisions to the Sexual Misconduct Policy is concerning. This has been an on-going issue in the Oxy community that some CCSRM members feel needs to be addressed as soon as possible, and edits and revisions should have already been implemented before the 2015-2016 academic year. Both frustration and disappointment are experienced by various CCSRM members who feel the Title IX Office, and the institution as a whole, is not taking these issues seriously enough. Because the Title IX Office responds to all sex discrimination cases in the Oxy community, while also managing other important projects and campus initiatives, the updated timeline suggested by the Title IX Coordinator is as follows: policy changes to be finalized during the Fall 2015 semester with the CCSRM committee and put in place by the beginning of the Spring 2016 semester. During the Spring 2016 semester, various trainings will take place to Oxy staff, administrators, and faculty members, so they are equipped to manage some of the new roles in the adjudication process.
B. Campus Climate Sexual Assault Survey
a. The HEDS Campus Climate Sexual Assault Survey.
The HEDS survey was administered at Oxy during the Spring 2015 semester. The survey instrument can be found here: https://hedsconsortium.app.box.com/sexual-assault-climate-survey. Advantages of this survey include anonymity of survey responders by HEDS removing any possible identifying information when there were few respondents to a particular question, reasonable cost of the survey instrument, questions are available to the public (increases transparency), and we can compare our data to the data at 50 similar small colleges who also participated. Disadvantages include limited gender identity categories and lack of ability to customize questions tailored to the Oxy student body.
b. Additional Survey Options
Since the administration of the HEDS survey, other survey options have become available. The ARC3 Survey (survey is free to all individuals, but we would need to administer it in house), AAU (aggregated institutional results from this survey have been mentioned in the past few weeks in the news. The cost is $85,000 per institution and until recently, institutions could not review the survey questions prior to signed up for the survey), and creating our own survey instrument (based questions from a variety of sources and tailored to Oxy students specifically. Disadvantages include that we’re not sure if students are ready to trust the institution to handle this data and that we will be unable to compare our data to other institutions).
c. Timing of Survey Administration
The first Campus Climate Sexual Assault Survey was administered during the Spring semester. One advantage of this is that first year students would be a part of the Oxy community for an entire semester before sharing their opinions, but a disadvantage is that most Oxy surveys are administered during the Spring semester which can lead to survey fatigue among the student body.
It did not seem necessary to have a Survey Sub-Committee as part of the CCSRM Committee. Instead, this topic will be brought up throughout the duration of the semester with the entire committee.
It was brought up in the CCSRM meeting that it may be beneficial to create our own survey so that we can ask specific questions based on our institution’s concerns. For example, out of about 50 incidents of sexual assault, only a small number of the survivors spoke with an Oxy official about reporting. We’re interested in why this is – is it because of social consequences, not feeling like it was necessary, not trusting the administration, etc.? Creating our own survey in-house could help fill some of these information gaps.
The committee also discussed that we hope to increase student participation in the next Campus Climate Sexual Assault Survey. It was mentioned that Oxy students seem to respond positively to data and they may be more inclined to complete the survey is the language and questions are more appropriate to the student body on our campus and if they can get a better sense of the data/institutional changes over time.
f. Next Steps
We will invite Dr. Teresa Kaldor from Institutional Research to join us for a future meeting and discuss the various options including an Oxy specific survey.
a. Revised FYRE Curriculum with Project SAFE.
The Title IX Office and Project Safe revised the FYRE Curriculum for first-year students to make it more consistent with the Prevention Education learning objectives we developed this semester:
1. Identify prohibited conduct under the Occidental Sexual Misconduct Policy e.g. sexual assault, dating and domestic violence and stalking.
2. Understand that all individuals can be victims of sexual assault, dating and domestic violence and stalking.
3. Describe affirmative consent and how it differs from lack of consent.
4. Identify how to seek and recognize affirmative consent.
5. Know the difference between responsible employees and confidential resources.
6. Know how to contact confidential resources.
7. Recognize myths about sexual violence.
8. Recognize conduct and words that contribute to a discriminatory environment.
In small working groups, students looked more closely at the Oxy Sexual Misconduct Policy, Upstander Model of Intervention, and the Empowerment Model of Helping. They created community action plans, where they identified a prohibited behavior as mentioned in the policy, how to intervene creatively, and how to empower the survivor. Students had the option to opt out of this working group and write an essay instead. Res. Ed. currently has the community action plans that were created and will be sharing with Project SAFE soon.
b. Online Education Program Review
The Title IX Office is currently in the process of reviewing our online violence prevention/education programs, and is very interested in receiving student feedback on several possible programs for future adoption. We would like to have a group of students participate in two focus group sessions to learn more about the objectives and purpose of online education and then to provide feedback on available programs, including Think About It, our current offering. Focus groups are scheduled Tuesday, November 3 & Tuesday, November 17 and students can apply for the focus group here: http://www.oxy.edu/office-title-ix/online-education-focus-group
D. Title IX Office Webpage
Title IX Coordinator Ruth Jones has been working with ITS and the Communication department to make enhancements to the Title IX Office webpage. Drafts of these pages will be prepared and shared with the committee soon, before they are made live.