Fix Mizzou's Conduct Process
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Over the last year at Mizzou, many fraternities have had their operations ceased due to an unfair conduct process that is opaque, slow, and unfair to the accused. The Office of Student Accountability and Support (formerly the Office of Student Conduct) operates in a way that makes their new name laughable at best. Julie Drury and other members of the office regularly bully students into making confessions under duress. They take outlandish claims seriously under the pretense of only needing a "preponderance of evidence" (meaning the judge hearing the case only needs to believe the violation happened "more likely than not") to find the accused guilty. This creates an environment where the accused is guilty until proven innocent and leaves many students feeling helpless during the entire process. More oversight is necessary so that the conduct officer is not simultaneously the judge, jury, and executioner. In many cases, the accused will not know the allegations against them until the very end of the process, leaving them little opportunity to defend themselves. The process is slow, with many cases taking up to a month after the incident originally took place before the accused is made aware of any violations. This petition is to demand that changes take place to fall more in line with the ideals of the United States Justice system. We demand a system that finds the accused "innocent until proven guilty". We demand that the conduct process is transparent with all parties involved so that the accused has a fair and honest hearing. We demand that the OSAS stops coercing students into testifying against other students so that they may get off easier themselves. Under current conditions students are not held accountable in a way that provides support for them to change. Instead the conduct process leaves them feeling helpless and resentful towards the university. We demand that changes occur so that future students have a fair and just process.
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