The University of Connecticut has settled a lawsuit filed by five women who claimed that the institution failed to protect them from sexual assault. The school will pay the plaintiffs a total of $1.3 million, and in return, UConn will admit no wrongdoing and the plaintiffs will agree to shut up.
Erica Daniels, Carolyn Luby, Rosemary Richi, Kylie Angell, and Silvanna Monccia filed suit against their alma mater last fall, alleging being treated like garbage after experiencing or writing about sexual assault. Luby was subject to stalking and harassment after penning an essay on rape culture within the school's storied athletic programs (2 NCAA BASKETBALL CHAMPIONSHIPS IN 2014 BAY-BEEEE!). Moccia, a former hockey player, claims she was kicked off the team after reporting that a male hockey player had raped her. Angell's rapist was found responsible for sexually assaulting her and kicked out of school, only to be allowed to re-enroll 2 weeks later (he ended up raping another student, a year later). Daniels and Richi each claimed that the school failed to consider evidence they presented in their sexual assault cases.
Superlawyer Gloria Allred, apparently finally bored with defending Tiger Woods' alleged mistresses against defamation, took on the case of the University's atrocious record and reported that her clients were satisfied with the settlement.
Our clients are moving forward with their lives in a positive manner with full knowledge that they have made a difference. I hope that other students who are victims of sexual violence on college campuses throughout this nation will hear about the positive results in our case involving UConn and be inspired and encouraged to report rape and sexual assault.
The University also expressed relief that they're sups happy that some of this madness is drawing to a close.
All parties agreed that achieving closure on the past and moving forward is more important than battling for vindication in the courts. The settlement will allow the plaintiffs to move on with their lives, and will allow the University to focus on its mission, which includes serving our students the best we possibly can, each and every day.
But UConn isn't coming away from this down $1.3 million with nothing to show for it. In agreeing to the settlement, all five complainants have agreed to stop disparaging or encouraging others to disparage the University, acknowledged that UConn isn't the total garbage-monster the initial lawsuit alleged the school to be, and noted that some UConn staffers were helpful to them in the aftermath of their sexual assaults or harassment. (#NotAllSchoolAdministrators). And the University admits no wrongdoing.
While this ends one PR nightmare for the school, the US Department of Education investigation into UConn's handling of sexual assault is ongoing. If the DOE finds the school fostered an unsafe learning environment for its female students, it could lose federal funds.
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