Sunday, February 25 , 2018, 9:44 am | Fair 56º


Jackson Bill to Permit Community Colleges to Discipline for Sex Assaults Passes Off Senate Floor

A bill by state Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara, that would allow community colleges to extend their jurisdiction beyond their campus borders to discipline students for sexual assault violations passed off the Senate floor Monday on a bipartisan vote. The vote was 35-0.

Senate Bill 186 would allow community college districts to use their existing disciplinary process to discipline, expel or suspend students for off-campus sexual assault and sexual exploitation. UC and CSU campuses already have such extended jurisdictions in place. But as a result of current law, community colleges have had little recourse when inappropriate student behavior occurs outside campus boundaries.

“If community colleges can already expel students for something such as plagiarism, it’s clear we also need to give them the tools to expel students for behavior as serious as sexual assault and sexual exploitation. I have heard from community college leaders that this is a tool they feel they need to keep their students and communities safe. This is particularly important in a place such as Isla Vista, where we have UC students and community colleges students living next to each other, but being held to different standards," Jackson said. “This will level the playing field for all students, regardless of where they are enrolled, send a clear message about sexual assault and help ensure that victims feel safe enough to stay in school.”

This bill is meant to complement but not supersede the criminal justice process. In addition to defining sexual assault, the bill defines sexual exploitation as prostitution as well as recording, photographing and distributing naked and sexual images without a person’s consent.

Jackson is the joint author this year with Senate leader Kevin de León of Senate Bill 695, to require that high school health courses include instruction on affirmative consent, sexual harassment, assault, violence, and the importance of developing positive, healthy relationships.

Last year, Jackson was the joint author of Senate Bill 967, also with Senator Kevin de León. Known nationally as the "yes means yes" bill, SB 967 made California the first state in the nation to define affirmative consent and required institutes of higher education to educate students about consent and sexual assault.

SB 186 now heads to the Assembly Higher Education Committee.

Jackson represents the 19th Senate District, which includes all of Santa Barbara County and western Ventura County.

— Lisa Gardiner is the communications director for state Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click here to get started >

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >