All University of Wisconsin System employees are now required to report suspected child abuse or neglect, under an executive order signed Monday by Governor Scott Walker.
The order directs all UW staff and officials to go directly to police or local social service agencies with information on any incidents of child abuse they witness or suspect. UW System President Kevin Reilly says it’s their “solemn moral obligation” to protect vulnerable populations, and the policy will help model that behavior for the thousands of students on campuses across the state.
The order comes in response to the sex scandal at Penn State, where university officials failed to act after a former assistant coach was allegedly caught abusing a boy in a team facility. Jerry Sandusky is accused of molesting 10 boys over a 16-year period.
Reilly says there’s no evidence anything like that has happened in the UW System, but the policy will help make sure they have taken “every precaution we could to avoid it.”
Over 50,000 minors attend camps, special events, and pre-college programs on UW System campuses each year.
AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (1:14)