MISSOULA, Mont. - University of Montana president Royce Engstrom says independent monitors will ensure the school follows through on promised reforms after a federal investigation into mishandled sexual assault reports on campus.
Justice Department Deputy Assistant Attorney General Roy Austin Jr. says investigators heard from women who were assaulted then unfairly belittled, disbelieved or blamed for speaking up.
The investigation began after 11 assaults involving university students were reported over an 18-month period.
Austin said issues of "deeply engrained gender stereotypes" and "institutional concerns about negative publicity" helped cause the problems.
The agreement requires the school to provide a grievance procedure for sexual harassment and assault allegations, and to respond to allegations of retaliation.
The university must also act to eliminate a hostile environment based on gender.
Engstrom says the school is already implementing many of the changes.
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