US slaps record fine on Michigan State University over Nassar abuse scandal

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WASHINGTON: The US Department of Education has imposed a record US$4.5 million fine on Michigan State University for what it called a failure to ...

WASHINGTON: The US Department of Education has imposed a record US$4.5 million fine on Michigan State University for what it called a failure to protect students from sexual abuse and ordered the university to make changes.

"Michigan State University did not adequately respond to complaints against Dr Nassar and Dean Strampel and thereby subjected students to a sexually hostile environment that denied them access to and the ability to benefit from their education," US Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said in a call with reporters.

"Too many people in power knew about the behaviours and the complaints and yet the predators continued on the payroll and abused even more students," DeVos said.Nassar's former boss, Strampel, was arrested in March 2018 and charged with criminal sexual misconduct. He was sentenced to a year in jail for neglect of duty and misconduct in office, according to media reports.

The university agreed to a number of fixes, including an overhaul of its procedures for Title IX, the federal civil rights law that bars discrimination on the basis of sex, and potentially firing employees who failed to take action in the face of complaints about Nassar and Strampel, the Education Department said.

 

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