Georgia debates bill at odds with US rules on campus assault

(File)

ATLANTA, Ga (AP) — Georgia House leaders have approved a bill requiring college employees to report sexual violence and other crimes to law enforcement, clashing with existing federal guidance to campuses.

The Higher Education Appropriations Committee on Wednesday approved a proposal from Rep. Earl Ehrhart, a Republican who chairs the panel. The bill heads to the full budget-writing committee.

Federal guidance sets requirements for schools dealing with sexual violence under Title IX, a federal civil rights law that prohibits sex discrimination in education. Schools that don’t comply could lose federal funding.

Opponents of the bill say victims of sexual crimes will lose their right to decide whether to report and fear it will discourage victims from talking to college employees they trust. Supporters argue some schools’ process for investigating reports violated accused students’ rights.

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