The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of the U.S. Department of Education will visit UC Santa Cruz to talk to students about how sexual violence is handled on campus. The OCR visit is a part of a Title IX compliance review, as UCSC is currently being investigated for its handling of sexual assault.
Title IX forbids discrimination on the basis of sex. The federal law specifically prohibits sexual harassment and requires universities that receive federal funding to effectively address and prevent incidents of harassment and sexual violence on campus.
On May 26 and 28, OCR representatives will table in Quarry Plaza. Afterward, students will have a chance to voice specific questions or concerns at the Amah Mutsun Conference Room in the Bay Tree Conference Center if they wish to speak in private.
On May 27, the OCR will hold focus groups throughout the day for students to share their experiences and insights about what needs to be improved on campus. Some of the people participating in focus groups include resident assistants, Student Health Outreach and Promotion (SHOP) interns, fraternity members, resource center interns and athletes.
All students are welcome to meet with the OCR. Students will not be asked to share their names or other personal information. Students who have witnessed or know about sexual violence on campus are encouraged to speak with the OCR.
UCSC staff will not be present during the event and confidential counselors will be available for students if the discussions trigger difficult emotions.