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Manitoba eyes penalties for schools that fall short on sexual violence policies

Post-secondary institutions in Manitoba could soon lose funding if they don’t abide by the province’s requirements for policies on sexual violence.

A bill before the legislature would allow the government to reduce grants and other payments to colleges and universities if they don’t develop clear policies on the issue, review the policies regularly and make public the reviews’ findings.

Advanced Education Minister Renee Cable says by and large, the institutions are doing a great job, but the bill would give the government an enforcement tool if needed.

Post-secondary institutions are required to develop policies that spell out ways that they raise awareness of sexual violence and educate faculty and students on issues such as consent.

They are also required to lay out how they respond to specific incidents of sexual violence.

The bill could be passed into law before summer.

“We need to make sure that everybody is safe when they’re at school,” Cable said Thursday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 7, 2024.

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