New Law Offers More Support to College Sexual Assault Victims

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SPRINGFIELD – A new law will require institutions of higher learning to offer victims and witnesses of sexual assault more options to reporting incidents confidentially.

Public Act 99-0426, backed by Representative Mike Smiddy (D-Hillsdale), requires schools to make confidential advisors available to victims and witnesses. The law will also change systems to make students aware of their options as well as train employees to improve responsiveness to allegations.

A uniform process will also be adopted for addressing and adjudicating sexual violence.

Smiddy says the new law will help to create a community where “sexual violence is not tolerated” and students will feel safer and supported when allegations are made.

“Sexual violence affects far too many young people on campuses right here in Illinois, and by incorporating the ideas of organizations and advocates across the state, students will have more resources and help,” Smiddy explains.

Public Act 99-0426 was signed into law and took effect on August 21.

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