July 08, 2019 It’s On Us PA, Press Release Harrisburg, PA – Celebrating the first major state laws to combat campus sexual assault in recent memory, Governor Tom Wolf held a ceremonial bill signing of legislation encouraging more students to report sexual violence. The governor was joined by bipartisan legislators and state and national leaders of It’s On Us, a movement fighting against sexual assault on college campuses for both men and women.“I launched It’s On Us PA over three years ago as the nation’s first statewide campaign to address the crisis of sexual assault on campuses,” said Governor Wolf. “I commend the students and education leaders who embraced the need to change campus culture. Their tremendous efforts created the momentum for these new reforms to protect students.”Two campus safety initiatives proposed by the governor were enacted as part of the new state budget package. One proposal, championed by Sen. Lisa Baker and Rep. Dan Frankel, requires post-secondary institutions to offer online, anonymous options for students to report sexual assaults. The other proposal, championed by Sen. Judy Schwank, protects students reporting sexual assault from being disciplined for violating school drug, alcohol, or other policies.“This bipartisan effort gives a voice to survivors and witnesses to report sexual assaults and break the silence that’s too often part of campus culture,” said Governor Wolf. “Sexual assault must never be tolerated and the reforms in these new laws create a path for more legislative progress in the future.”“We have to do everything in our power to keep students across Pennsylvania safe from sexual harassment and assault,” said Sen. Schwank. “With five colleges in my district, this issue truly hits close to home and I’m grateful to First Lady Frances Wolf and Gov. Wolf for their support.”“The reluctance of assault victims to report these acts to authorities blocks their chances for justice and helps understate the scope and severity of the problem,” said Sen. Lisa Baker. “The requirement for colleges and universities to offer accessible and confidential avenues of reporting is a crucial beginning step in creating a safer campus environment.”“Sexual violence knows no political affiliation,” said Tracey E. Vitchers, executive director of It’s On Us. “It does not discriminate. It affects each and every one of us – whether we ourselves are survivors or we know and love a survivor. This is why I am grateful for the bipartisan support both bills have had, and am thankful for the leadership demonstrated by Senator Baker and Senator Schwank in championing this legislation.”Governor Wolf also secured $1 million in the state budget to continue awarding It’s On Us grants to public and private 2-year and 4-year institutions. This will be the fourth consecutive year the Wolf administration will provide grants for programs to change campus culture.”The governor also invited Pennsylvanians to join the thousands of people, including superintendents and university and college presidents, who have signed the “It’s On Us” Pledge, which encourages everyone to help end sexual assault. The It’s On Us PA website has more information about the campaign and pre-written tweets users can share on Twitter to encourage others to take the pledge. Gov. Wolf: Pennsylvania Leads Nation in Combating Sexual Assault on Campus SHARE Email Facebook Twitter
Denmark’s pensions and insurance industry association has called on the government to facilitate more flexible working patterns around retirement age, highlighting several aspects of the country’s much-lauded pension system which it said are ripe for change.Per Bremer Rasmussen, chief executive officer of Insurance & Pension Denmark (IPD, Forsiking & Pension), said in a commentary that though the Danish pension system was considered world-class today, “there are actually several elements that we in the industry want to put under the microscope – without weakening the foundation.”The government-planned pension commission should look at increasing flexible retirement both before and after state pension age, work to simplify the public pension system and rules applying to private pensions, and ensure the best possible interaction between the various pillars of the pension system, so that it always pays to save up for retirement, he said.Evidence suggested that increased flexibility was required in the country’s pension system, said Bremer Rasmussen, citing a study conducted by IPD which found that 25% of Danes wanted to retire before retirement age – along with another study that found a third wished to retire later. He proposed a smoother transition away from working life, with the option for employees to reduce their hours incrementally while approaching retirement age, arguing that this increased flexibility could allow many Danes to work for longer after the official retirement age.The decision in Denmark to increase state pension age in line with demographic changes – reached as part of the 2006 Welfare Agreement – was an important precondition for maintaining the affordability of the current welfare system, said Bremer Rasmussen.“From our point of view, the development requires more flexibility in the pension system than we have today,” the CEO said.But there were currently several barriers to flexibility both before and after the state pension age, he said. such as the inability to delay the start date for “ratepensioner” (installment pensions).“The retirement decision is for most an either-or decision – for many, a smoother transition to retirement will be preferable,” he said.The Ministry of Employment is currently preparing the agenda for the proposed pension commission. Its establishment was agreed in May 2019, as part of a pact between the then Liberal Party-led coalition government, the Danish People’s Party and Radical Liberal Party, on pension reforms to increase the coverage of the senior pension – an early-retirement disability pension.The presidency of the Danish Economic Councils (De Økonomiske Råd) said last year the commission should also consider other pensions issues, such as the relationship between the public private sectors, and pension coverage for groups with a loose connection to the labour market.Looking for IPE’s latest magazine? Read the digital edition here.