BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Indiana University announced a new policy that bans incoming student-athletes from participating if they have a history of sexual or domestic violence.
The policy states that any student “who has been convicted of or pled guilty or no contest to a felony involving sexual violence, or has been found responsible for sexual violence by a formal institutional disciplinary action at any previous collegiate or secondary school (excluding limited discipline applied by a sports team or temporary disciplinary action during an investigation) shall not be eligible for athletically-related financial aid, practice or competition at Indiana University.”
The policy says sexual violence is “dating violence, domestic violence, rape, sexual assault or sexual violence as defined by the Indiana University policy on sexual misconduct.”
The Indiana University-Bloomington Faculty Athletics Committee approved the new policy on April 12, 2017. Athletic Director Fred Glass was one of the driving forces behind it.
“This is not a situation where we want to take any chances. This is an absolutely serious matter, and we want all of our coaches and administrators in the athletic department to take it as seriously as it deserves,” Senior Associate Athletic Director Jeremy Gray said.
Several campus departments worked together to write the policy, including IU’s Office of Student Welfare and Title IX and its Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.
In 2015, the Southeastern Conference banned member institutions from accepting transfers from athletes with a history of misconduct, including sexual assault, domestic assault or other forms of sexual violence.
Indiana’s athletic conference, the Big Ten, doesn’t have a specific policy and is instead letting member institutions determine their own guidelines. Gray said the university hopes to set an example for other schools in the conference.
“I think it’s important that we set an example and be part of a much larger conversation about these issues. All pockets of society should take it seriously,” he said.
The policy includes an appeals process:
Relief from this mandatory disqualification policy may only be granted by a panel consisting of the University Title IX Coordinator, University General Counsel, and University Faculty Athletics Representative after a review by it of all the pertinent facts available and a finding of compelling exceptional circumstances.
You can read the document in full here.