Governor Working to Prevent Campus Sexual Assaults

HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) -- Governor Terry McAuliffe is working on a task force to stop sexual violence on college campuses.

All of Virginia's public universities and colleges signed an order and are joining forces to combat what has become a unfortunate problem.

"This is a nationwide problem. And the national statistics are both startling and saddening. One in five women are sexually assaulted while in college. And most of those attacks occur in the freshman and sophomore years," said McAuliffe.

There's a federal rule that records incidents of sexual assault throughout U.S. colleges, but this new state order will take that a step further.

Some of the measures include how campus leaders will respond to sexual assault, how they'll prevent assault, and increasing campus services for students.

"We can, and we must, do better, to protect our nation's young people," explained McAuliffe.

Bridgewater College said it is behind the governor's decision. The college's policy on sexual assault states that they quickly adopted federal processes and procedures to keep students safe on campus.

Other local colleges and universities were unable to comment at this time.

McAuliffe will continue to measure how the program progresses and it will be put into place for this upcoming school year.


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