State wants improved medical response to campus sex assault victims

By Staff

A bill aimed at improving college campus-based medical responses to student victims of sexual assault is advancing at the Capitol, with House lawmakers having given the measure its approval and the Senate set to review next.

As currently written, House Bill 1220 would require institutions of higher education to establish agreements with nearby medical facilities with specialists who may provide treatment to students in need of sexual assault exams.

CU and other institutions also would be required to post information about those facilities and other resources on the Web; it also calls for increased training of staff members, including student housing resident assistants, who provide emergency response and transportation coordination.

The legislation was introduced as a response to reports that campuses across the state lack quick access to “rape kits” or exams by a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE exams).

State budget update: The House this week is at work on the Long Bill, the state’s budget, which last week gained the approval of the Senate. In its current form, the budget maintains a $66.6 million increase in funding for higher education, about $17 million of which would go to CU. Also included is $15 million for the last wing of the CU-Boulder Systems Biotech building, $9 million for the third phase of the UCCS Visual and Performing Arts building, and $500,000 in ongoing support for the CU Alzheimer’s Center.