Statement to Larry Nassar Victims

Jan. 26, 2018

First and foremost, we apologize to victims of Larry Nassar. One after another, they spoke out bravely in open court last week. They asked for their voices to be heard, for responsiveness, for action. We acknowledge their voices and say to the survivors, their families and everyone in our community affected by sexual violence that we recognize that change is overdue.

It is also clear that MSU has not been focused enough on the victims. Our hope is that there will be an opportunity soon to resume a dialogue with counsel for the victims to reach a fair and just resolution.

The Board today discussed the following points and authorized the following actions:

We must also acknowledge that there have been failures at MSU, not only in our processes and operations, but in our culture, and we are united in our determination to take all necessary steps to begin a new day and change the environment at the university. The Board has initiated a process to bring in an independent third-party to perform a top-to-bottom review of all our processes relating to health and safety, in every area of the University, and to provide recommendations on actions that we will implement to change the culture of MSU on this important issue.

We understand that the survivors, their families and the public have many questions about the Nassar matter. We have asked the Attorney General’s Office to conduct a review of the events surrounding the Nassar matter. Today, we are calling on him to conduct his review as expeditiously as possible and to appoint an independent, third-party to promote bipartisan acceptance of the results.

Again, we are committed to taking the right actions to create a culture that provides a safe environment for all members of our community, and the transition to new leadership will be a key component in helping us change course. The Board will play an integral role in these efforts and in making MSU a leader locally and nationally in preventing sexual abuse.

We cannot change the past, but we can and will devote our time and resources to foster healing and move forward together.