A black Yale graduate student took a nap in her dorm’s common room. So a white student called police

constitution, Due Process, Equal Opportunity

Looks like all those campus-wide diversity trainings just weren’t enough.  A white person voices suspicions about an innocuous person of color. Police are summoned. And the encounter is posted on social media, sparking outrage about racial profiling.  In what is becoming an all-too familiar episode, a black Yale University graduate student was interrogated by campus police officers early Tuesday morning after a white student found her sleeping in a common room of their dorm and called police.  For the full story, click here… Yale_University_logo.

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Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court finds that colleges possess a “special relationship” with students and an affirmative duty to take reasonable measures to prevent student suicide

Due Process, Equal Opportunity
In the aftermath of a tragic on-campus student suicide, the student’s family sued MIT for wrongful death.  The case progressed to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.  The court concluded ” a university has a special relationship with a student and a corresponding duty to take reasonable measures to prevent his or her suicide in the following circumstances.  Where a university has actual knowledge of a student’s suicide attempt that occurred while enrolled at the university or recently before matriculation, or of a student’s stated plans or intentions to commit suicide, the university has a duty to take reasonable measures under the circumstances to protect the student from self-harm.  For the full decision, click here… 
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Explosive Title IX allegations – Student sues KY school district in Federal Court after employee uploads student’s nude pics to Russian pornsite without consent

Due Process, title IX

Student alleges, in addition to 4th amendment violations, that a Kentucky high school employee confiscated her cell phone and uploaded the phone’s private pics to an adult website without her consent.  For the full complaint, click here…  

 

TIX

Former student sues Marshall University for Title IX violations, Retaliation in Federal District Court (WV)

Equal Opportunity, human resources, title IX

Medical student alleges that she was verbally assaulted, given less desirable work assignments and then subsequently terminated from her residency program after complaining of a hostile work environment, sexually explicit videos.  For the full complaint, click here… 

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Nassar survivor says she was not given chance to appeal 2014 Title IX findings

Due Process, Equal Opportunity, title IX

Perhaps one of the most controversial revelations of Michigan State University’s handling of Larry Nassar is the outcome of a 2014 Title IX investigation filed by Amanda Thomashow.  While questions surrounding the conclusion of that report still remain, further review of MSU’s Title IX policies and procedures is helping to connect some of the dots, revealing the university may have violated policy when handling it.

That’s because, according to Title IX policies and procedures, Thomashow should have been given a chance to appeal the findings of the investigation, but she says the university never told her that she had the option of doing that.  For the full article, click here…

TITLE IX TRAINING1

The three important steps your institution can take right now to better prepare for the upcoming OCR Title IX Guidance Document/DCL 2018

Equal Opportunity, title IX

As most institutions await the 2018 Title IX policy changes from OCR based in part on the 2017 interim guidance, several steps can be taken now to prepare your institution for this change.  There are several prudent steps that can be implemented now that will place your institution in a more favorable position to incorporate successfully these upcoming changes.  

Policy Review – Does your current Title IX policy, training of staff and sexual-assault investigative techniques meet present guidelines?  Does your institution’s website homepage state your Title IX Coordinator? 170117-betsy-devos-rhk-1924p_ddf06ad3f6c00ab71a786cb104bb39e8.nbcnews-ux-2880-1000With regard to the required Notice of Rights and Options, for victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, etc. your Notice of Rights and Options should include the following information in order to be compliant with the Clery Act and Title IX.  Does your Notice of Rights and Options inform victims that the institution will provide written notification to students and employees about existing counseling, health, mental health, victim advocacy, legal assistance, visa and immigration assistance, and other services available for victims, both within the institution and in the community?

Assembling a team – has your home institution assembled a Title IX policy implementation team in anticipation of the expected 2018 Title IX policy changes?  Many public institutions, for example, require Board of Trustees approval, public notice, and other procedural steps before changes to institutional policy can be achieved which may delay implementation.

Setting aside/securing funding for any additional Title IX training, etc., needed to effectively implement changes.  This step is key.  While the exact date of the upcoming Title IX policy changes is unknown, best practice indicates following these initial steps now will place your institution on more solid ground in order to achieve Title IX Compliance in accordance with the upcoming 2018 expected changes.

Contact University EEO, Inc. today to assist your institution in comprehensive Title IX, Clery Act Compliance/Assessments & Investigations

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Is there a link between Title IX, Campus Labor Unions and the Duty to Collectively Bargain Terms and Conditions of Employment?

Due Process, Equal Opportunity, human resources, Labor Relations, title IX, title VII

This vital question has not been examined fully by the courts with regard to the duty to bargain the terms and conditions of employment in light of the Title IX interim guidance set forth in September 2017.  As institutions now enjoy the right under the interim guidance to choose between preponderance of the evidence and the heightened clear and convincing evidence to determine a campus sexual assault violation, the question now turns to whether campus labor unions have a seat at the table when institutions make this decision.  Which standard of review is applicable if a unionized campus employee is alleged to have violated campus Title IX policy? Campus labor unions may, in fact, argue that agreed upon collective bargaining agreement controls (many of which require the clear and convincing evidence standard), while the campus administration may well rely upon the potentially lower standard (preponderance).  Thus, a term and condition of employment.  The following document analyzes this issue under the 2011 DCL, and remains heavily applicable and relevant to the upcoming 2018 Title IX Guidance. Title IX, Labor Unions and the Duty to Collectively Bargain.

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Male student sues Ball State University in Federal District Court for Title IX violations, Gender Bias and raises 5th Amendment, Due Process concerns

Due Process, Equal Opportunity, title IX

The student alleges that, during a Title IX investigation, the Ball State University administration failed to follow its own policies and created an environment in which male students accused of sexual misconduct are “fundamentally denied due process to be virtually assured of a finding of guilt.”  The student further alleges that preferential treatment was given to the Complainant in the method and manner witness statements were provided and the investigation was conducted, including the fact that Ball State failed and/or refused to provide the student with the same protection in his complaints against Jane Doe that was afforded to her. According to the lawsuit, the male student was owed a duty of reasonable care by Ball State to allow him an equal opportunity to present information and witnesses in support of his defense, a duty of care to conduct an impartial and thorough investigation of the allegations of sexual misconduct, a duty to adequately train its investigative staff, and a duty of care to utilize the preponderance of the evidence standard in reaching a determination.  Click here for a copy of the lawsuit.

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