Gottfredson makes VP for student affairs Robin Holmes do the rape interview for him

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He paid for her family’s bowl game junkets, and now the bill is due. Andrew Greif has the transcript in the Oregonian. Ask a simple question:

How would you define “immediate action” when you learn of an accusation?

Holmes: There are several things that surround this, one of which is federal law and state laws and then you have university policies and expectations. There’s a concept of when the university is put on notice. And so as soon as we find out any information about anything regarding prohibited discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual abuse, sexual assault, any of those types of prohibited behaviors, then we are put on notice that that has potentially occurred and we have to respond immediately. Right away means immediate, right away. In a process that happens all of the time at the university for one of those things occurring the information is taken in. Depending on whether it’s an incident that happens between a staff member and faculty member or faculty member and a student or a student and a student that will go on a particular direction depending on the groups that are involved. But the investigation of that will happen immediately and you’re trying to gather enough information to see if you have probable cause. It doesn’t have to be clear and convincing, no doubt that it happened, you just need probable cause that some type of prohibited behavior has potentially occurred and once you have that probable cause the rest of the process would kick in. Although that would happen immediately, it does take quite a bit of time. This is a very, very difficult, convoluted, long, comprehensively difficult thing to look into and we have to be very careful, very deliberate and we have to pay attention to due process for everyone that’s involved as well as the rights of the survivor. They never go very fast because of it. And they shouldn’t, this is really important stuff.

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8 Responses to Gottfredson makes VP for student affairs Robin Holmes do the rape interview for him

  1. Stick to the facts says:

    She at least is doing the interviews! Might I make a suggestion to this blog that what needs to be done now is to put together a open list of questions that the University (from all angles of the administration) needs to answer publicly and without delay. Let’s all contribute what the questions are that need to be answered — about the chain of communication on this incident; about how actually keeps the statistics on this campus; about when a mass email is sent out and when it is not (since we all know we have received emails about assaults and alleged assaults off campus in the past, but we did not on this one); about the reporting procedures between UOPD, EPD, Admin, Athletics; any other topics.
    The Administration could help itself by getting the questions up, answering them in public and updating them on a regular basis.

  2. U of O Professor, who specializes on Title IX says:

    Anyone reading Robin Holmes’ statements, with experience dealing with these issues at the U of O, can only be outraged by the misrepresentation and obfuscation. Last fall, a rape allegation was brought to me by an undergrad student that had been ignored by Affirmative Action, Student Affairs, and Robin’s office–for over six months (despite the student’s repeated requests for action). The only thing Robin’s office had done was discourage her from talking to the police! Action finally occurred when (1) the complaint was forwarded over their heads to a top administrator, actually sympathetic with these issues (Affirmative Action immediately apologized for ignoring the complaint) and (2) the student got a good lawyer.

    Robin has no law background. (Her statements about the last “Dear Colleague” letter are inaccurate.) Neither does Penny Daugherty, the U of O’s “Title IX Coordinator”. Most importantly, neither of them really cares about women students or this issue.

    Fire them.

  3. Another professor says:

    One of the things Robin Holmes et al have done over the years to quash complaints is to require victims to tell their story over and over again, to different offices and different people. Eventually the victim is so traumatized by retelling the story she drops it–‘revictimization’ is the term for this–at which point the case is forgotten about. The chaotic nature of the process has been cited for years now. The reason why it remains is because it ensures the U of O can claim a clean record on these matters–since most of the victims have gone away.

  4. Process Reviewer says:

    Article in the RG this morning about student conduct code raised some really interesting issues that had already been highlighted as needing changes. One I thought was particularly interesting was the lack of equivalent protection, right to get a lawyer, etc by the accuser.

    Where does all of this stand in terms of holding people accountable for actually implementing recommendations, responding back why they were not made? UO is such a process happy place we just take the fact that a review was done as equivalent to actually taking action. Nothing gets done here but lots of talk talk talk — and not just on this issue. That is one of the real cultural things that have to change. People have to be held accountable and pushed to take action, not just conduct endless debates.

  5. Gott Guts? says:

    Meeks got it right in the RG this morning:

    “Who’s in charge here?”

    “All we’re getting is a game of hot potato with the university, the authorities and the athletic department, with no one stepping forward to claim responsibility.”

    “…the message is muddled at best.”

    The hallmark of Gott’s reign so far is mealy-mouthed pablum. This incident has highlighted the serious leadership vacuum on this campus. I hope the Board is watching and taking careful notes.

  6. Law Professor says:

    The RG article today refers to the “outside study” of U of O sexual harassment/violence policies conducted this past fall. The U of O’s handling of this pretty much sums up everything wrong.

    To do the study, the U of O went all the way to Virginia to enlist a middle aged white male, Allen Groves. Groves’ background is in litigation, not equal opportunity law, and his main professional activities are in national inter-fraternity councils, where, apparently, he flourishes.

    Groves’ own school, U Va, is currently being sued for negligence on sexual assault issues. He runs the office that oversees these matters. Finally–incredibly–he first became known to the legal community on these issues defending the Citadel’s exclusion of women.

    He was paid over $4,000 by the U of O for his services.

    The U of O should get someone with serious credentials to look into this mess. Maybe even a woman, or person of color.

    • emacdaddy says:

      Also, that report seems to only be available via public records request, despite my best efforts to locate it.