By Joan Tabachnick and Jennifer Cinicolo
During the past decade, effective victim advocacy, changes in public policy, and a growing spotlight on horrific cases have focused the public’s attention on campus sexual misconduct. Research confirms the need for increased attention in this area, as college-aged women experience the highest rates of sexual violence of any group. According to a 2020 study by the American Association of Universities, 26% of female and 7% of male undergraduate students experience nonconsensual sexual contact during their four years on campus.
ATSA is defining it’s voice in the response to campus sexual misconduct, first drafting a public policy statement, which outlines what is known about the perpetration of sexual misconduct and identifies the potential for ATSA’s critical contributions to the campus world. ATSA then submitted comments regarding the proposed US Department of Education Title IX regulatory changes. The most recent changes opened to door for ATSA members by requiring equitable services for the students who have been harmed and the students who have been accused or found responsible for sexual misconduct. Even with this opening, there continue to be concerns and questions about how this current policy handles those who engage in sexual misconduct.
Campuses have begun to seek out expert guidance about effective interventions for the students who have been accused or found responsible for sexual misconduct. This is where ATSA members have a unique voice and expertise to offer. By offering access to the research and practice knowledge about individuals who have sexually harmed, colleges and universities will be able to make more informed decisions about those students who are in the system. With this information, campuses will also be able to move one step closer to achieving the important goal of preventing sexual misconduct.
We also recognize that the campus world is very different from the current criminal justice environment that most ATSA members work within. Through surveys conducted by ATSA’s prevention committee, we learned that many ATSA members have interest in this work, but need more information, background about changing regulations, and insights into working with a broader range of behaviors as well as non-adjudicated students.
To address these identified areas, a working group of the Prevention and Public Policy Committees created a new listserv to share resources, research, and case consultation advice for ATSA members beginning to work within the campus setting.
Beginning in June 2022, ATSA will be hosting four free webinars, bringing in both outside experts as well as ATSA members with this unique expertise to cover two key areas:
I. What do ATSA members need to know about the campus world?
II. How can ATSA members apply and modify their unique knowledge and expertise to the diverse needs of the campus world?
We are pleased to announce our first webinar on June 1, 2022 at 3pm EST (12p PST). This webinar features Rachel King, PhD, an expert in restorative justice practices and former Title IX coordinator at Curry College. Rachel will provide an overview of the campus environment, Title IX process, and restorative justice.
1. Campus 101: Overview of the Campus Process and Everything you needed to know about how the campus world will respond with Rachel King, PhD of RKResolutions (June 1, 2022)
The following sessions will focus on:
2. What is Changing and What is Possible with Jay Wilgus JD (on June 20, 2022, 3pm EST)
3. Risk/Needs Assessment with Campus Populations: Differences, Similarities and Practical Applications with Katie Gotch, MA, LPC (September 2022)
4. Applying ATSA Member's Knowledge: Case Conceptualization on College Campuses with a clinical ATSA panel moderated by Jennifer Cinicolo, LMHC (September 2022)
Look for more information about each of these webinars in the coming months. Please consider joining this listserv and one or more of these webinars. We hope you will join us!
 ATSA Campus Public Policy Statement: https://www.atsa.com/pdfs/Policy/Addressing%20Campus%20Sexual%20Misconduct%20FINAL.pdf
 ATSA Comments on Title IX Proposed Changes: https://www.atsa.com/Public/Office/Legislation/ATSATitleIXRuleChangeComment2021.pdf