From the President

System update reflects clearer affirmative consent standards

Posted June 23, 2018

To the University community:

At Metropolitan State University, ensuring that all students and employees enjoy an environment that is safe, respectful, and supportive is a core value and commitment. We are committed to eliminating all forms of sexual violence, harassment, and discrimination. This spring, the Minnesota State Board of Trustees approved updated language regarding affirmative consent in Policy 1B.3 - Sexual Violence Policy . The updated language clarifies that consent must be affirmative: in other words, informed, freely given, and mutually understood willingness to participate in sexual activity, expressed either by words or clear, unambiguous actions.

The policy also provides clarifying language on what is and what is not affirmative consent: 

  • There is no consent if coercion, intimidation, threats, or physical force are used.
  • The existence of a dating relationship or the existence of a past sexual relationship does not prove or provide the basis for consent.
  • Consent must be present throughout the activity and can be revoked at any time. 

Board Policy 1B.3 applies to all students and employees, as well as to Minnesota State trustees and "others as appropriate." The policy expressly recognizes the importance of reporting incidents of sexual harassment, discrimination or violence; the guarantee of confidentiality to the person making a report; and the rights of the person reporting.

Our Dean of Students and Director of Equal Opportunity have taken the lead in providing awareness, training, and educational and supportive materials on affirmative consent for the University community. The Minnesota State system office is working to update the mandatory education module regarding Sexual Violence Awareness on D2L. Additional resources and services are listed below.

We remain committed to providing a positive, respectful learning environment and workplace for all. We have clear policies in place to promote the safety and well-being of our students, faculty, staff, and others in our learning community, and we are fully committed to having a safe environment free from sexual assault.

Sincerely yours,

President Virginia "Ginny" Arthur, JD

@MetroPresArthur

Metropolitan State University

The following resources and services are available to our campus community: 

  • Equal Opportunity Director: Craig Morris, 315 Founders Hall, (651) 793-1272
  • Dean of Students & Title IX Coordinator: Dr. Herbert King, 236 Founders Hall, (651) 793-1508
  • Student Counseling Services: (651) 793-1568 (after hours, press "0" during voicemail);
  • Metropolitan State Domestic & Sexual Violence Crisis Line: (651) 793-1500
  • Saint Paul Safety & Security Desk: (651) 793-1717;Saint Paul cell: (651) 775-0444; Minneapolis cell: (612) 775-3589; Midway cell: (651) 775-6122; Brooklyn Park: (763) 354-4168; 24-hour answering service: (651) 793-1700
  • Healthcare and Wellness Services: 240D Founders Hall; 651-793-1552
  • Employee Assistance Program: LifeMatters Employee Assistance Program's (EAP) ; Life Matters EAP: 1 (800) 657-3719 
  • Center for Accessibility Resources, L223 New Main; (651) 793-1549
  • Ramsey County Sexual Violence Services (SOS) : confidential services for victims of sexual violence