Public university to ban sexual relationships between faculty and students
The University of Connecticut (UConn) is set to implement a new policy this fall which would ban consensual sexual relationships between staff members and students.
The Hartford Courant reported last week that the new rules would specifically prohibit consensual sexual relationships between faculty or staff and undergraduate students, and between graduate students and any faculty or staff member with authority over them.
The changes are part of the school’s response to allegations that music professor Robert Miller, 66, engaged in sexual conduct with multiple students over decades, going so far as visiting UConn students’ freshman dorms and providing students with drugs.
Administrators are also responding to demands from the community that they impose the same sort of restrictions that are commonplace at many other institutions of higher education.
“It should be easy for everyone there to grasp a simple notion: Professors are supposed to teach, not have sex with, students — even if the sex is consensual,” the editorial board of the Hartford Courant argued last week.
UConn spokeswoman Stephanie Reitz told Campus Reform on Wednesday that nearly every major political organization at the school has a voice in re-crafting the school’s policy on staff/student relations.
“It seems at least at that point that there were concerns that it wasn’t in everyone’s best interests and that there was some gap in university policy that should be looked at,” she said.
Reitz could not confirm what the exact penalties would be for professors or students who violated the new rules.
UConn trustees will review and decide upon the legislation at their meeting on August 7th or on September 25th.
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