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PA Attorney General pushes for continued Title IX protections

Jamie Martines
| Thursday, July 20, 2017, 4:06 p.m.
Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro talks to Tribune-Review editors and reporters in Greensburg in April 2017.
Dan Speicher | Tribune-Review
Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro talks to Tribune-Review editors and reporters in Greensburg in April 2017.

State attorneys general are urging Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to preserve protections for survivors of sexual assault on college campuses.

Pennsylvania State Attorney General Josh Shapiro submitted a letter to DeVos signed by 19 other state attorneys general, all Democrats, on Wednesday.

"We're calling on Secretary DeVos to listen to law enforcement and trust survivors of sexual assault by keeping these protections in place and putting student safety first," Shapiro said in a statement .

"While we recognize that there is a great deal more that can be done to protect students and agree on the importance of ensuring that investigations are conducted fairly, a rushed, poorly-considered effort to roll back current polices sends precisely the wrong message to all students," the letter reads.

The Department of Education established guidance under the Obama administration that universities and colleges attempt to combat sexual assault on college campuses under Title IX, The Hill reports .

DeVos took meetings earlier this month with survivors of sexual assault as well as with groups representing students who say they were wrongly accused, a sign that she will soon roll back the Obama administration's guidance on sexual assault, reports Politico .

"There are some things that are working. There are many things that are not working well," DeVos said in a meeting with reporters last week following closed-door meetings about Title IX policy, according to Inside HigherEd . "We need to get this right."

Jamie Martines is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at jmartines@tribweb.com, 724-850-2867 or via Twitter @Jamie_Martines.

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