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NYC Council Bill Takes Aim At Campus Sexual Assaults

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Public Advocate Letitia James' bill would require New  York City college to report stats on sexual assault every month. (credit: Alex Silverman/WCBS 880)

Public Advocate Letitia James’ bill would require New York City college to report stats on sexual assault every month. (credit: Alex Silverman/WCBS 880)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Last month, the White House told colleges and universities they need to do more to fight sexual assaults on campuses.

Now, some at City Hall want to force them to take that advice.

As WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman reported, Public Advocate Letitia James is proposing a bill in the City Council that would require colleges to coordinate with local rape crisis centers and the NYPD and force them to release sexual-assaults stats to the public every month.

During a rally Monday outside City Hall, James noted that New York City has more college students than Boston, famous for its prestigious universities, has people.

She called the stats from the White House “daunting and eye-opening.”

One in five college women are victims or rape or attempted rape and that colleges with at least 6,000 students average one rape per day, according to the White House numbers.

The stats are not a shock to Mary Haviland, executive director of the New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault.

“I can’t tell you how many students we have talked to who have had to drop out of school,” she said.

Forcing to schools to report sexual assaults is a key component of James’ legislation, said Councilwoman Vanessa Gibson, D-Bronx.

“They cannot fail to report these crimes for fear that their campuses may have a negative light,” Gibson said.

Officials hope to get the bill passed before the fall semester begins.

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