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Division of Student Affairs

Executive Policy 15 Working Group
 Meeting Minutes

July 25, 2019

In attendance: 

Holly Ashkannejhad, Candace Chappelle, Sophie Gaither, Alexis Guse, Nikki Hinshaw, Luci Loera, Judi McDonald, Jaime Nolan, Anna Schilter.

EP-15 Timeline – Holly Ashkannejhad

Initial goal was to have the EP15 policy ready to be disseminated to students by August first. 

  • Deadline has been adjusted for the draft to be processed and reviewed to prevent redrafting.
  • First draft should be prepared by August 1st

New guidelines for the department of education will be rolled out starting in September 1st

New goal for completion of the EP –15 policy manual is anticipated for the end of fall semester. After the review from the following constituents, the policy will be implemented. 

  • Department Faculty / Administrators
  • EP-15 group will review 
  • Policy Records and Forms 
  • Students  
  • Board of Regents 

Two draft policies were created in May of 2019. 

  • Sexual misconduct draft
  • Discrimination draft

Differing outlooks questions whether these two components should be separate or if sexual misconduct is treated as discrimination. The current WSU outlook is that these two policies should be treated the same. 

The importance of highlighting the defendable rights for students. The current WSU policy for free speech is too vague for legal proceedings to be able to hold those responsible for discriminatory language accountable because of the lack of clarity in terms of defined language that highlights discrimination. 

The current phase of the EP-15 policy work towards finding a balance between the university's mission and values when it comes to free speech zones. While discrimination and harassment are prohibited the standards are not clearly defined. 

The following will be defined within the EP-15 Policy for clarity: 

  • Policy and violations standards, discriminatory violation standards, sexual misconduct standards, stalking standards, intimate partner violence standards, quid pro quo (HR is responsible for investigating) discrimination standards, retaliation interference standards, false and frivolous allegation standards. 
  • Language in defining when the process is final must be defined. 
  • An entire section of examples will be added to the EP-15 policy to help address the standards being implemented. 
  • Jurisdictional power policy is being addressed at WSU to clarify where the jurisdiction lies in terms of when the university is responsible and when the university can address conduct (whether the situation occurred on campus / off campus and how this situation can impact the university environment long term). 
  • WSU preferers to use the term Survivor vs. Victim. 

Charge for this working group will be looking at the First Amendment and protected speech. 

  • A positive approach of what we CAN do to encourage outcomes rather than the alternative.
  • Educate the campus about communication shifts from the k-12 system – college.
  • Highlighting guest speaker opportunities and start by creating a conference centered around what we can do to ultimately change the overall campus climate. This symposium may include WSU faculty, and EP-15 to highlight to our community the work that we are doing to improve free speech / discrimination issues on campus while connecting constituents.

Structure – how can we include case studies into the working group (what are the rights that faculty have within the classroom)

  • Policy committee 
  • Free speech campus climate committee 

BART (Bias Assessment and Review Team) has now shifted to the: Community Response Team 

  • Bias is an inflammatory term that we are looking towards shifting away from. Turning towards a community-based team approach that focuses on empowerment and positivity instead of the negativity and divisiveness is the goal with the name change. 
  • EP-15 meeting has the goal of uniting to collaborate closely with the Community response team.
    • Inquiry from Nikki Hinshaw: If we could come up with some protocol for this response (bias response team) for branch campuses that would be great. 
    • Response: Jamie will work towards setting up a meeting to connect branch campuses
  • EP –15 Policy side and Free Speech component
    1. Action item: to come up with a name for the free speech side of the EP15 working group
    2. Coordinate separate working groups to include faculty/students/ both
    3. Create opportunities for students to understand their roles/rights/responsibilities as members of the campus community.