George Washington University: Secret Informer Line

Category: Due Process
Schools: George Washington University

Students and faculty at the George Washington University (GW) continue to live under a nightmarish "Compliance Line" policy that invites secret allegations and investigations. The hotline, established in February 2002 and administered off campus by Pinkerton Security, allows charges of any nature to be made anonymously. The administration may then launch investigations and create secret dossiers, without even notifying the target or providing him or her with the means for immediate rebuttal of quite possibly malicious charges. When media attention was first brought to bear on this scandalous policy, GW President Stephen Joel Trachtenberg issued a public statement in which he called the policy "a little aggressive" and repudiated the actions of Vice President and Treasurer Louis Katz, who apparently instituted the policy unilaterally. Students and faculty only learned of this informer line once it had been created. Despite his statement, however, President Trachtenberg has yet to dismantle the Compliance Line.

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