Detroit Free Press: MSU Trustees "Tone Deaf" In Giving Raise to Simon

Dec 22, 2017

The Detroit Free Press criticizes the Board of Trustees at Michigan State University for offering her a raise during December 2017 meeting while the Larry Nassar investigation continues and victims come forward.

The editorial board of the Detroit Free Press called MSU's trustees "horrifically tone deaf."

MSU is in serious trouble. Former MSU physician Larry Nassar pleaded guilty last month to criminal sexual assault; at least 125 women and girls have made complaints to police. News broke Tuesday night that the university allowed Nassar to see patients for 16 months while he was under investigation for sexual assault by MSU's own police force. The university is bracing for an onslaught of civil suits. 

Atop this mess is MSU President Lou Anna Simon, whose administration has been criticized not just for its failure to detect and stop Nassar, but for what many regard as its anemic efforts to combat sexual assault on campus. 

In a front-page editorial earlier this month, the Lansing State Journal called on Simon to resign and said trustees should fire her if she refused to do so. 

Instead, the  Board of Trustees offered her a raise. 

Screen shot of Detroit Free Press column criticizing MSU Board of Trustees.

The Detroit Free Press credited Simon with declining the $150,000 raise.

But it said the offer signaled a "serious misunderstanding of the obligations of the board of trustees."

It also said the board's actions place civil liability over students' safety.

The harsh words from the Detroit Free Press follow the Michigan Speaker of the House's Tom Leonard for Simon to step down.