Legislature Approves Sen. Dodd’s Cal State Harassment Bill
SACRAMENTO – In the wake of a much-anticipated report criticizing the California State University system’s handling of sexual harassment complaints, the state Legislature today approved a bill from Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa, that would increase accountability and oversight in the resolution of harassment and violence cases on CSU’s 23 campuses.
“We must hold administrators accountable and bring necessary transparency to make sure cases aren’t swept under the rug,” Sen. Dodd said. “As a grandparent and CSU graduate, I am committed to making sure students will feel safe and respected on our campuses. This bill ensures we put the culture and processes in place to make that happen.”
Sen. Dodd’s Senate Bill 808 was introduced in response to numerous cases of sexual harassment and violence occurring in the California State University system in recent years. Findings of the California State Auditor report released in July concluded that in some cases, universities improperly closed cases and failed to provide adequate discipline or take action against offenders.
Under provisions of SB 808, the outcome of any sexual harassment settlements would be posted on college websites and reported to the Legislature. Sen. Dodd plans follow-up legislation that would address other State Auditor recommendations.
SB 808 is co-sponsored by the California Faculty Association and CSU Employees Union and has support from Solano County government. The bill was approved by the Senate on a 37-0 vote after previously being approved by the Assembly. It heads next to Gov. Gavin Newsom for a signature.
“Legislation like SB 808 is needed because there is systemic abuse and harassment happening at campuses across the CSU system,” said John Vasquez, chair of the Solano County Board of Supervisors. “As the home county of a state university, the well-being of students at the California State University Maritime Academy is important to the board of supervisors. SB 808 provides greater transparency and protections for students.”
Senator Bill Dodd represents the 3rd Senate District, which includes all or portions of Napa, Solano, Yolo, Sonoma, Contra Costa, and Sacramento counties. You can learn more about the district and Senator Dodd at www.sen.ca.gov/dodd.