“The board has a paramount responsibility to ensure the safety of our students and our employees at every institution.”
~Drew Petersen, Board of Regents

Sexual Misconduct, Employment References, and Hiring in Higher Education: Is it Time for the Duty or Care to Evolve?
By Neal Schlavensky
August 30, 2019

Wisconsin Law Review

Stop Passing the Harasser


The #MeToo movement put the national spotlight on sexual misconduct.  No group, organization, or industry was immune to victims providing narratives of sexual misconduct, including higher education.  In 2018, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel published an article examining the complaints of employee sexual misconduct at UW System campuses between 2014 and 2017.  The article reported that “UW students accuse teachers of sexual harassment in more than half of all campuses cases”.

The UW System Board of Regents took action after national headlines exposed two UW System employees who were hired at other universities after having sexually harassed women without appropriate reference check or disclosure protocols in place.  The Board passed resolution 11038, which required the adoption of new policies on documenting and disclosing sexual misconduct.  The resolution signaled the Board’s strong commitment to combating sexual misconduct and maintaining safety across all campuses.

Media Highlights UW System’s “Pass the Harasser” Policy


‘Pass the Harasser’ Is Higher Ed’s Worst-Kept Secret. How Can Colleges Stop Doing It?

By Sarah Brown and Katherine Mangan,  June 27, 2019 

Reference Checks Ahead

By Colleen Flaherty,  June 27, 2019

No More Passing the Harasser

By Colleen Flaherty, September 25, 2018

UW schools to share personnel files with each other, state agencies as soon as January 2019

By Kelly Meyerhofer, August 22, 2018

Steps taken by UW System to Change the Policies

Stop Passing the Harasser

Guidance and Background Information on Policy Implementation pdf