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Cultivating a Culture of Respect

In September 2017, the University of Rochester commissioned an Independent Investigation into claims of sexual harassment and retaliation. The final Report from the investigation released in January 2018 outlines a series of recommendations for how the University can improve its policies and create clearer processes for reporting and investigating sexual misconduct.

On this website, you will find the latest updates on the University's commitment to respond to the Report's recommendations and other meaningful steps the University community is taking together to cultivate a culture of respect.

View the Full Report

“I believe we can draw strength from our shared commitment to the ideal of Meliora.”

Richard Feldman Email to the University community, January 14, 2018

Interim President Designate Richard Feldman

As we take steps to heal and rebuild, I hope we will unite as one community, listening carefully and respectfully. There is much work to be done in the days ahead. I am meeting with many faculty, staff, and students to discuss next steps. Together we will live up to our pledge to be ever better. Rochester has an opportunity to be a model—not just in the letter of our policies and procedures but in the spirit of our actions—measured by our respect for each other and our differences in a campus community that is safe and inclusive for all.

Richard Feldman
Interim President Designate
University of Rochester

12 Recommendations: A Starting Point

These 12 recommendations from the Independent Investigation Report are a starting point. 
In the coming weeks, other groups may offer additional recommendations on how to improve policies related to sexual harassment and how to address issues related to campus climate. Together, the University community will begin to put those ideas into action.

University of Rochester Library

1 Deadline: April 10, 2018

Provide clear, written notice of investigative processes and rights.

2a Deadline: In Progress

Develop a diverse list of University personnel to serve as advisers to claimants and the accused on sexual harassment claims involving faculty.

2b Deadline: April 10, 2018

Hire two new counsel to advise claimants and the accused on sexual harassment claims involving faculty.

3 Deadline: April 10, 2018

Complete a review of mandatory sexual harassment training for faculty, staff, students, and trainees.

4 Deadline: April 10, 2018

Amend Policy 106 to specify examples of acts of sexual harassment, the range of disciplinary actions, and other remedial steps that may be taken.

5 Deadline: July 10, 2018

Retain outside counsel to advise on new procedures regarding confidentiality of investigations of claims of sexual harassment or sexual misconduct by faculty.

6 Deadline: End of 2018

Publish an annual report about complaints and their resolution.

7 Deadline: April 10, 2018

Discuss implementing procedures for reviewing emails on University servers and amend the University’s IT Policy.

8 Deadline: In Progress

Make it easier to access policies, procedures, and resources online.

9 Deadline: April 10, 2018

Consider amendments to the University’s Intimate Relationships Policy.

10 Deadline: April 10, 2018

Dedicate an office to investigate sexual harassment or misconduct by faculty.

11 Deadline: In Progress

The president should appoint a senior cabinet-level official to oversee implementation of these recommendations and compliance with deadlines.

12 Deadline: In Progress

The Board of Trustees should appoint a trustee or special committee to oversee implementation of the recommendations and compliance with deadlines.

Comments or Questions

The University is committed to listening carefully and respectfully to all the members of the community. Please share your comments and perspective.

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Find Resources

There are a number of resources and policies available to report and address complaints of sexual harassment and retaliation within the University.

Explore Resources & Policies

Further questions about the Independent Investigation?

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