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Radio Made in Michigan
Thu February 21, 2013
Senate Votes To Expand Teacher-Student Sex Ban
The state Senate has approved legislation that would outlaw consensual sexual relationships between school personnel and students who are between the ages of 18 and 20.
The Michigan Public Radio Network's Rick Pluta reports.
Relationships between teachers and students who are younger than 18 are already illegal.
Republican state Senator Rick Jones says in a school setting, the age of the student should not make a difference.
“When you have power and authority over somebody, you cannot have a consensual relationship,” he says.
Shelli Weisberg of the American Civil Liberties Union says teacher-student sexual relationships may be wrong, but making them illegal may be going too far.
“Criminalizing sex between consenting adults puts us in a whole other trajectory that we’d have to look at legally,” she says.
She says school personnel can be fired for inappropriate relationships with students regardless of their age.