As members of the Sexual Assault Task Force begin their discussion of sanctioning — the latest phase of policy reconstruction — they’ve amped up their meeting frequency.
The members will meet weekly this month as they rewrite the University’s policies on "sexual assault":http://www.dailytarheel.com/section/sexual-assault-on-college-campuses . Currently, the members are working through several different drafts of the policy.
Gina Smith, an outside attorney specializing in sexual assault cases who attended Tuesday’s meeting, said some schools have taken on less effective sanctioning measures. Others, such as Duke University, have chosen to use the option of expulsion for students found guilty of sexual assault.
“There have been some nightmare sanctions, like writing a paper,” she said. “We want to understand what the purpose of that type of sanction would be and ... whether that is appropriate.”
Several members said sanctions should be tailored to the offense.
But Title IX Compliance Coordinator Howard Kallem said the group should use caution in doing so because the policy addresses discrimination in other areas, such as gender or race.
“What is the message when there are different punishments for different kinds of discrimination?” he said.
Members talked about classifying sanctions by several criteria such as penetrative versus non-penetrative and the deliberateness of the act.
Bob Pleasants, interpersonal violence prevention coordinator for UNC Student Wellness, said the idea of determining sanctions based on intent made him uncomfortable because a common defense for assaults is they were not deliberate.