PRINTER'S NO. 257
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
SENATE BILL
No.
295
Session of
2019
INTRODUCED BY BAKER, FONTANA, HUGHES, COSTA, J. WARD, BROWNE,
YUDICHAK, TARTAGLIONE AND HAYWOOD, FEBRUARY 14, 2019
REFERRED TO EDUCATION, FEBRUARY 14, 2019
AN ACT
Providing for the establishment of sexual harassment and sexual
violence online reporting system by postsecondary
institutions.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. Short title.
This act shall be known and may be cited as the College
Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence Online Reporting System
Act.
Section 2. Definitions.
The following words and phrases when used in this act shall
have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Online reporting system." A system established under
section 3.
"Postsecondary institution." Any of the following:
(1) A community college as defined under section 1901-A
of the act of March 10, 1949 (P.L.30, No.14), known as the
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Public School Code of 1949.
(2) A university under the jurisdiction of the State
System of Higher Education.
(3) A university located in this Commonwealth that
receives a nonpreferred appropriation.
(4) A private postsecondary institution.
Section 3. Online reporting system.
(a) Establishment of online reporting system.--A
postsecondary institution shall establish and maintain an online
reporting system to receive complaints of sexual harassment and
sexual violence from students and employees. A report shall be
investigated through the process established in the
postsecondary institution's sexual harassment and sexual
violence policy. A postsecondary institution may not fail or
refuse to investigate an anonymous report because it is
anonymous.
(b) Anonymous reports.--The online reporting system shall
permit anonymous reports, which shall be investigated in
accordance with subsection (a).
(c) Required information.--A postsecondary institution shall
provide students and employees making reports under this section
with the following:
(1) Information regarding who will receive and have
access to the reports filed.
(2) How information gathered through the online
reporting system will be used.
(3) Contact information for on-campus and off-campus
organizations serving victims of sexual harassment and sexual
violence.
(d) Statement.--The online reporting system shall
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prominently display the following statement:
It is important to note that while the institution will
evaluate all reports of sexual assault and sexual
harassment, the institution's ability to investigate and
respond to allegations may be limited depending on the
information provided in the report. Individuals are
encouraged to review the institution's policy for
investigating reports of sexual violence for more
information about procedures and resources.
(e) Access to data.--A postsecondary institution shall limit
access to the data collected, created or maintained under
subsection (a) to only the data subject and as follows:
(1) Only individuals with explicit authorization from a
postsecondary institution may enter, update, access, share or
disseminate electronic data related to an incident of sexual
harassment or sexual violence collected, created or
maintained under this section.
(2) The ability of an authorized individual to enter,
update, access, share or disseminate data must be limited
through the use of role-based access that corresponds to the
official duties or training level of the individual and the
institutional authorization that grants access for that
purpose.
(3) Actions in which the data related to an incident of
sexual harassment or sexual violence are entered, updated,
accessed, shared or disseminated outside the postsecondary
institution must be recorded in a data audit trail.
(4) An institution shall immediately and permanently
revoke the authorization of an individual determined to have
willfully entered, updated, accessed, shared or disseminated
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data in violation of this section.
(f) Appropriations.--The Secretary of the Budget shall
withhold funds appropriated on behalf of a postsecondary
institution that fails to establish and maintain the online
reporting system required under this act. Funds withheld by the
secretary from a postsecondary institution shall lapse back to
the General Fund at the end of the fiscal year for which they
are appropriated.
Section 4. Effective date.
This act shall take effect in one year.
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