President Taylor Reveley sent the following message to the campus community Sept. 10, 2015. - Ed.
Dear William & Mary Community,
At the beginning of last academic year, I established a W&M Task Force on Preventing Sexual Assault and Harassment. This group was to find facts and make recommendations in four areas: campus climate, prevention and education, training for faculty and staff, and investigation and adjudication.
I am very grateful to the members of the task force and its subcommittees for their extremely hard, conscientious work. The task force’s 21 members -- students, faculty and staff -- were drawn from across the university and led by Student Affairs VP Ginger Ambler. They tackled pertinent issues in all their complexity and produced meaningful recommendations about how those of us at W&M can do better.
The task force report, now available on the university’s website (http://www.wm.edu/sites/sahp/), describes our progress over the last year and provides a road map for continued progress. It is significant that the task force did not wait to finish its work before beginning to recommend remedial steps. The university has already taken several steps in response to the report, including, among others, adding a new Title IX investigator position (to assist the Title IX coordinator) and creating a permanent committee to continue the work of the task force. Here is a link to a story in the W&M News that provides detail and context on the task force’s work: http://www.wm.edu/news/stories/2015/task-force-focuses-wm-on-understanding-and-combatting-sexual-assault.php
Sexual violence afflicts society generally, including campuses – high school, college and university -- across the country. It will take all of us working together to combat it at William & Mary. This is an important reality: the job is not someone else's to do; it’s for each of us and all of us, students, faculty and staff. This is the only way serious, lasting change will occur. No one has a pass to stand on the sidelines while others do the hard work of effecting that change.