Texas Anti-Campus Rape Laws Could Be the Strictest Nationwide
On the heels of new revelations in the sexual assault scandal at Baylor University, Texas could become an unlikely leader in campus anti-rape legislation.
State Senator Kirk Watson, a Democrat, filed five bills this morning that would press schools to report on incidents of assault and encourage students to report the crimes—either through anonymous online tools that the new laws would require universities to set up or to campus police or administrators.
And while he acknowledges that several Texas schools already have “affirmative consent” standards, which insist that colleges communicate to students that they must receive a verbal “yes” from their sexual partner before they initiate any sexual contact, he wants them implemented across the state. Further, Watson is pushing for a uniform amnesty policy on campus that would ensure that students who report assaults aren’t punished for admitting they were drinking underage at the time of the assault or were in violation of a school conduct rule. Dallas News writes that the threat of discipline for such offenses held Baylor students, in particular, “back from coming forth with their allegations.”