Virginia task force issues 21 recommendations to combat sexual assaults on college campuses

Virginia leaders hope to put their state in the lead on combatting college campus sexual violence with the release of 21 recommendations to address it.

A task force appointed by Gov. Terry McAuliffe released its recommendations Thursday.

The report came against the backdrop of last year's scandal, sparked by a Rolling Stone magazine story — later discredited — that claimed to give an account of a gang rape at a University of Virginia fraternity. McAuliffe appointed the task force before the scandal erupted.

Among the recommendations are mandated sexual assault response teams on public and private campuses, the development of prevention plans to deter sexual assault, and increased sexual assault reporting options, such as smartphone applications.

Many of the recommendations build on existing programs and few require new legislation.