Restricting Records: Title IX records would benefit victims, promote accountability

The Issue: The attorney general has ruled that WKU violated the Kentucky Open Records Act by denying records of Title IX investigations to the Herald and the University of Kentucky’s student newspaper, the Kentucky Kernel.

Our Stance: By receiving these records, our intention is not to drag anyone’s name through the mud or publish sensationalized details of sexual misconduct or assault. Our purpose and intent remain the same as it has for 93 years, to hold the university accountable.

The Herald’s ongoing scuffle with the university over faculty and staff sexual misconduct records dates back to November when WKU’s Office of the General Counsel denied our request.

WKU, per university policy, defines sexual misconduct/assault as “actual or attempted sexual contact with another person without that person’s consent.” This includes, but isn’t limited to intentional and unwelcome touching, sexual contact when the victim isn’t able to consent and rape.

In the university’s denial letter, they disclosed WKU had conducted 20 investigations into faculty and staff sexual misconduct since 2013. Nine of these cases involved faculty members and 11 were staff; six of the 20 investigations found a violation of university policy, but all six resigned before the university took final action.

 

Read the full editorial at wkuherald.com

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