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College administration responds to sexual assault with task force to encourage conversation

first_imgEric Richelsen | The Observer Editor’s Note: This is the first installment of a five-part series on sexual assault at Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s. Today’s stories focus on the University and College actions and initiatives in response to sexual assault.The Saint Mary’s administration and the Student Government Association (SGA) have responded to the nationwide movement of college students pushing schools to take more action against sexual assault on campus by creating a more open dialogue among Notre Dame, Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross, as well as implementing a Task Force to focus on the issue.In a letter to the students Apr. 29, College President Carol Ann Mooney announced the creation of the Presidential Task Force. She said the task force would be comprised of students, faculty and staff and would promote the conversation about sexual violence.“This task force will recommend ways to further improve our efforts to prevent sexual assault and sexual misconduct and to assist and support student survivors of sexual assault,” Mooney said in the letter. “It will also examine procedures for handling cases of sexual assault when they occur.”The task force held its first meeting Sept. 18, according to an email dated Sept. 22 in which Mooney announced she would send a campus-wide email summarizing each meeting. She said the task force will address three issues: steps to reduce and eliminate sexual assault, ways to improve the College’s procedures for handling claims of sexual violence and ways to better support students who have survived sexual violence. The email also announced the formation of three subcommittees — education, procedures and support — to address each of these issues.Building a task forceRegina Wilson, director of Campus Ministry and chair of the support committee on the task force, said the task force meets once a month.“The three committees are working independently, and at the larger task force meeting we share our minutes and the work we’ve done, and then there’s interaction,” she said.Wilson said the future of the task force after this school year is unknown; Mooney, who commissioned the group, will retire at the end of this school year.Junior Caylin McCallick, a member of the procedures committee, said specific details about the group’s meetings cannot be made public until the task force releases its official minutes. Though it was originally announced that the task force would release the previous meeting’s minutes after the following meeting, McCallick said the task force currently plans to wait for the College’s new website to launch before doing so.The procedures committee in particular has been tasked with updating the Title IX process at the College, McCallick said.“There’s a set [way] to handle Title IX,” she said. “Just because you’re complying with the rules doesn’t mean it’s on time or doesn’t mean it’s going as smoothly as possible for all the parties involved.“We really want a system of accountability for all parties involved in the claim,” she said. “We’re working to make sure everyone is held responsible for their individual parts of the Title IX process.”“My goal is to make [the task force] a voice for students,” McCallick said. “I’m open to people telling me what they’ve experienced and seeing if I can bring that to the discussion and seeing what we can do about it. I’m also hoping that it brushes off the cobwebs of things we didn’t used to talk about.“I know that this is a hot topic on campus, and I think it should be because it’s something that affects all of us,” she said. “I hope that it accomplishes the goals that Mooney set out to accomplish.”Mooney sent an email Monday with the most recent update on the task force. The email included names of all current members on the task force, as well as specifications for the intended end result of the task force.“The taskforce will write a report that will be delivered to the community no later than May 1, 2015,” the email said. “The report will contain: a list of what measures we currently take to educate our students; what is currently available for our students; suggestions and recommendations for improvements to what we are currently doing and recommended next steps and suggestions for change.”Finding support in ministryWilson said Campus Ministry’s role in the issue of sexual assault is for the most part one of support.“We are all trained,” Wilson said. “We have professional ministry degrees so we are all trained to spend time with students and to provide pastoral care to them.”She said the College recently defined Campus Ministry’s role in the sexual assault process for students.Wilson said. “All the campus ministers are a confidential resource for students who have experienced sexual violence.”Wilson said her role in the process is meeting with students and listening to anything they have to say. She said she will encourage the students to seek other resources if the student wishes.“Because we’re pastoral care, we’re here if they want to pray,” Wilson said. “If they have questions related to their faith or spirituality that have been affected by their experience…we’re here to be with them and to in a sense be a presence of God offering them care and attention and assurance that they’re supported and loved.”Working within SGAStudent body president Kaitlyn Baker said although SGA’s role in dealing with sexual violence has largely been turned over to the task force, they still have done some work in terms of addressing the issue.“[Vice President] Maddie [Kohler] and I meet once a month with the presidents and vice presidents of Holy Cross College and Notre Dame,” Baker said. “The sexual assault topic is something we touch on every time. … We’ve been giving them feedback on our students’ experiences and changes we’re making over here as well as things they can do over there to help and vise versa.”Baker said Notre Dame’s student council consulted SGA in regards to their proposal to the University’s Board of Trustees, which outlined four categories on the issue of sexual assault for the Board to address.“We worked together to help them get in contact with different students who have had experiences over at Notre Dame dealing with sexual assault,” she said. “They reached out to Saint Mary’s students to get that feedback. … They did a good job in getting a lot of different student perspectives from Saint Mary’s as well as Notre Dame, and pointing out some of the changes that need to be made over there, especially when it comes to how their process works.”SGA does not plan on delivering a similar proposal to Saint Mary’s Board of Trustees; however, the College’s Board interacts with students on a regular basis, and discusses issues including sexual assault, Baker said.She said SGA also partners with the College’s Belles Against Violence Office (BAVO), and there are plans to have an SGA representative work closely with BAVO and sit on BAVO’s Green Dot Campus Committee, which consists of 20 faculty, staff and students and whose goal is to promote campus culture change.Although Baker said she does not work closely with the administration on sexual assault, she said she does bring issues to their attention when students express concern.“I meet with administration multiple times a week … If students come up to me with concerns or things they want to see changed, I’m always bringing it up,” she said.Baker said the biggest concerns students raised were about the investigators involved in the Title IX process and the fact that the College’s legal counsel is also the Title IX coordinator.“The three investigators were hired out,” Baker said. “The task force is deciding on if the legal counsel and the Title IX coordinator need to be two separate positions or not.”In addition to acting as an intermediary between students and administration, Baker said she wants to encourage more students to attend the Title IX trainings that occur each semester.“The Title IX training actually brings representatives from Notre Dame who are familiar with their system and talk to our students about what that process would look like if you were to go over there,” she said.“ … I don’t think anyone realizes how much that training encompasses,” she said. “It’s not just going over what Title IX is. It’s really going over what it is, how that looks on our campus, what that looks like if it’s violated, and it also goes over what that looks like for a Saint Mary’s student over on Notre Dame’s campus.”Tags: BAVO, Green Dot, Green Dot Program, presidential task force, sexual assault, sexual assault series 2015last_img read more

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Study ranks the best places to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day

first_imgBatesville, In. — A recent study by WalletHub has ranked the best cities for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. Dayton entered the list at 10 and Cleveland hit the list at 12.Here is a link to the complete study.last_img

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Hughes wants to send Huth on loan

first_img Press Association The FA announced the news of Huth’s charge on Wednesday and he has until 6pm on January 21 to respond to it. Huth apologised earlier in January for participating in a game with a Twitter account which invited users of the social media site to guess from cropped photographs of people in explicit, sexual poses whether those pictured have male or female genitalia. A series of tweets posted from Huth’s official account showed him taking part and making indecent remarks. He deleted the tweets and posted a message saying: ”Clearly no offence was meant or directed to anyone, but apologies if I’ve offended anyone.” Specifically regarding that matter, Hughes said: “There is an issue with social media and football players or any person in the public eye, and you have to be very careful. “If you say anything or get involved in things that other people have an issue with, then there is a possibility you will get pulled up on it and the FA will get involved, and that is the situation we find ourselves in. “Robert was very quickly mindful of people being upset about, so he apologised immediately, took the posts down and we hoped that would be the end of it. “But obviously the FA has looked at it and think he needs to explain his actions, so I think that process is ongoing and we will see where it leads.” Meanwhile, Hughes has indicated he is looking at bringing a new wide man in during the current transfer window after winger Oussama Assaidi, who had been on a season-long loan from Liverpool, had that deal cut short and joined Dubai side Al Ahli. Hughes has been linked with Tottenham’s Aaron Lennon, and said of the England international: “I’m not sure about his situation, and the situation of players change in this month, it seems, on a daily basis. “We’ll look at opportunities and if they make sense to us, we have areas of the team we think we can improve if we can get the right players in. “But for the time being we have to keep our cards close to our chest.” Hughes did dismiss talk of him trying to sign Manchester City striker Edin Dzeko, adding: “I can tell you straight – there would be interest if it was ever viable, but it is not one we could ever contemplate doing unfortunately.” Full-back Erik Pieters is a doubt but midfielder Steven Nzonzi looks set to be available for the Leicester contest after both came off at half time with groin complaints during the Arsenal match. Victor Moses, the winger on loan from Chelsea, was an unused substitute in that game but looks set to make his return to action this weekend for what would be his first appearance since sustaining a thigh problem in November. To add to Huth’s situation, he was this week charged by the Football Association with aggravated misconduct in relation to comments he made on social media. He very much seems headed for the Stoke exit door, although his manager has played down the suggestion there would be no way back for him at the Staffordshire outfit. Speaking on Thursday at his press conference to preview Saturday’s trip to Leicester, Hughes said: “I’ve had discussions with Robert and I think it is fair to say he needs games. “We are looking to try to get him that if we can. “It needs to be at the right club, and needs to be the right opportunity for Robert himself. “We want to get games into him so he is fit and ready for us. “Under-21 games probably are not the right environment for him as a senior player, so he needs to get out and play games of meaning. “If we can find the right team for him, hopefully he’ll get five or six games and then he can come back to us and be ready to go again.” Huth, a Potters player for more than five years, has made only one Barclays Premier League appearance since suffering a knee injury in November 2013. And the 30-year-old did not feature in the squad at all for last Sunday’s 3-0 loss at Arsenal – a game which saw his fellow German centre-back Philipp Wollscheid, newly arrived at Stoke on loan, go straight into the first XI. Stoke boss Mark Hughes wants to send Robert Huth out on loan but insists the defender can still have a future with the club.last_img read more

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Champions League winner Liverpool back at work after thrilling — but way too short — offseason celebration

first_img (Kamil KrzaczynskiAFP/Getty Images) https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/14/10/jurgen-klopp-071819-getty-ftrjpg_b1vujnpnap4f131bqrcq3wq6i.jpg?t=133414964&w=500&quality=80 Friday night at Notre Dame Stadium, Liverpool will play Borussia Dortmund in the third game of its preseason and the first of its three-game tour of the United States.Watch Liverpool-Dortmund live on fuboTV (7-day free trial) “They’re pretty close to each other. You see it, of course,” manager Jurgen Klopp told the media Thursday. “They were all happy to see each other again. So that’s all good. Holiday is good, important — true. And maybe the first two weeks you don’t think about anything else than about holiday. But then for all of us we started getting excited again, looking forward to the season.”Liverpool is moving quickly toward a season that in some ways will be the busiest in its history. The club will play in seven different competitions with a trophy at stake, albeit two of those will be transacted in a single day.Annually the winners of the Premier League and FA Cup meet in the FA Community Shield match that represents a start to the English soccer season. Manchester City won both, which means the second-place finisher in the Premier League gets invited. Having ended the 2018-19 league season a single point behind the winners, Liverpool will face Man City on Aug. 4. In the NBA now, dealing with this sort of thing is called “load management.” If Liverpool were to remain active to the finals in all the cup competitions, it literally could be playing two full seasons’ worth of games.”Hopefully we can,” Klopp said. “But that’s all that I can say about that. Before the season, it’s always the same. It would be great if we could use the whole squad throughout the whole season. That would make life much easier. MORE: John Barnes wishes Premier League glory for Reds”Yeah, the number of games sounds big. Games, we never try to avoid. We’re happy about having as much as possible. That’s how it is — that means you have a very successful season. The league will always be the main focus, because we play most of the games there. There’s no team in the league where we can say, ‘Let’s send the kids there,’ or whatever. All these games are so competitive and so close.”Nobody can take away from us that we won the Champions League, but it will not help us a lot in the new season.”center_img NOTRE DAME, Ind. — The offseason, as glorious as it was, lasted 36 days. That’s all. It almost was cruel to require Liverpool FC to return to training so soon after winning the UEFA Champions League title on that glorious evening in Madrid, but the June 1 date for that game against Tottenham Hotspur and the Aug. 9 Premier League opener against Norwich City assured the Reds’ celebration would be brief.Think about it. The New England Patriots report to camp in a week. They’ll have had enjoyed five months and 22 days of championship bliss by the time they’re again dealing with Bill Belichick on a full-time basis, and it’ll be another two weeks after that before the Patriots must play anyone in an exhibition game. LIVERPOOL PRESEASON: Transfers, rumors, PL fixturesThe winners of the Champions League and Europa League meet in the UEFA Super Cup. That will pit Liverpool against Chelsea on Aug. 14 in Istanbul.Neither is a must-win game, but the fact the Reds will play league rivals in each of them also figures to mandate significant efforts.Along with chasing its first Premier League title, there are the domestic cup competitions: the FA Cup and the Carabao Cup. And becoming champions of Europe also guarantees entry to the FIFA Club World Cup, which will be contested in mid-December in Qatar.last_img read more

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