The U.S. Department of Education has ordered Michigan State University to pay a record-setting $4.5 million fine in the wake of a major sex abuse scandal involving Larry Nassar, former doctor to elite gymnasts and female athletes.
But not everyone is satisfied with the amount of the fine. John Manly, a lawyer who represents victims of Nassar said:
Just this week, the government fined YouTube $170 million for simply monitoring kids illegally. Here we have a university that engaged in the systemic protection of a pedophile.”
John Manly also filed the first lawsuit against the University of Southern California (USC) in the wake of a similar scandal involving George Tyndall, a former gynecologist who is accused of abusing hundreds of women since the 1990s.
In both cases, officials at the universities are accused of covering up the abuse and failing to protect students from assault.
The fine against MSU involves violations of the Clery Act, which is a federal law that requires universities to keep data on campus crimes and warn students about potential threats. MSU was also found in violation of Title IX, a federal law that prohibits gender discrimination.
MSU agreed to pay a $500 million settlement after the Nassar scandal, including payouts $425 million to 333 women who say they were sexually abused. Dozens of lawsuits have yet to be resolved.
USC has offered to pay a $215 settlement to victims of Tyndall, although not everyone is joining the settlement. The university continues to face individual sex abuse lawsuits in state court from women who were abused.