Massachusetts Senate to Debate How Sexual Assaults Are Handled at Colleges

Under a bill the Massachusetts Senate plans to debate on Thursday, colleges and universities would need to ramp up their policies addressing sexual assault and domestic violence on campus.

According to State House News Service, the bill would require higher education institutions to include in their policies information on how to report sexual violence incidents; descriptions of available medical, safety, counseling and other services; and interim protective measures like changes in living arrangements.

Colleges would also need to enter agreements with domestic violence agencies and rape crisis centers to provide services and training, as well as share information with local law enforcement.

Sen. John Keenan of Quincy has proposed amending one section of the bill to include "aggregate information about the gender, sexual orientation, race and ethnicity of the reporting and responding parties involved in these allegations."

Keenan also wants training for new students and employees.

The bill received initial Senate approval in July.

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