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S.F. No. 1300 - Higher Education Institution Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence
Author: Senator Michelle R. Benson
Prepared By:
Date: March 25, 2015


Section 1 includes a cross-reference in the Data Practices Act to the new data classification in the bill.

Section 2 expands requirements governing higher education institution policies on sexual harassment and sexual violence.

Section 3 makes the new requirements in the bill applicable to certain private institutions.

Section 4 amends victim rights provisions. Included are requirements that a policy must allow sexual assault victims to decide whether to refer a case to law enforcement; protect the privacy of victims; forbid retaliation and establish a process for investigating complaints of retaliation; and, consistent with laws governing access to student records, provide a student reporting a sexual assault with access to the student’s description of the incident.

Section 5 requires higher education institutions to include a provision in their policy that no student who reports, in good faith, sexual harassment or violence will be sanctioned for admitting to a violation of a policy on the personal use of drugs or alcohol as part of the report.

Section 6 requires higher education institutions to enter into a memorandum of understanding with the primary local law enforcement agency that serves the campus. Contents of the memorandum are specified. A campus would be exempt from this requirement if it establishes a sexual assault protocol team with local law enforcement to facilitate cooperation and collaboration.

Section 7 requires higher education institutions to provide an online reporting system to receive complaints of sexual harassment and sexual violence from students and employees. The system must permit anonymous reports. Data collected as part of the system are classified as private data on individuals.

Section 8 requires higher education institutions to prepare annual reports with statistics on sexual assault. Items that must be included in the report are specified. An institution’s report is classified as private data on individuals. The Office of Higher Education must publish statewide data collected under these provisions and, consistent with privacy laws, include specified data items for each institution. Data must be published as summary data and not identify victims or perpetrators. If an institution or the Office of Higher Education is unable to publish data because of laws governing access to student records, it must explain in its report why the data were not published.

Section 9 provides that data on incidents of sexual assault shared with campus security officers or administrators are private data on individuals for postsecondary institutions that are subject to chapter 13. Other institutions must limit access to the data to the subject and persons whose work assignments reasonably require access. Only individuals with explicit authorization may enter, update, or access electronic data and access must be limited pursuant to protocols, audit trails, and other requirements. If an individual is determined to have willfully entered, updated, accessed, shared, or disseminated data in violation of these requirements or chapter 13, the institution must immediately and permanently revoke the authorization of the individual. If there is willful access to data without explicit authorization, the matter must be forwarded to the county attorney for prosecution.

Section 10 requires higher education institutions to provide comprehensive training for investigating or adjudication complaints of sexual assault.

Section 11 requires higher education institutions to require student health service providers to screen students for incidents of sexual assault and to provide information on resources available to victims. Each institution offering student health or counseling services must designate a staff member as a confidential resource for victims of sexual assault. Data shared with a confidential resource are classified as sexual assault communication data under section 13.822, subdivision 1.

Section 12 requires local law enforcement agencies to cooperate and enter into and honor the memoranda of understanding required under the law.

Section 13 contains an August 1, 2016, effective date.

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