Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2017-11-15
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Advocates for Student Sexual Assault Survivors condemn Education's ending guidelines
From a press release
2017-09-25

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


Washington, DC — A coalition of legal and policy advocates today condemned a decision by Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to rescind and replace guidance on federal Title IX law originally issued in 2011 to assist schools in addressing and investigating campus sexual violence. DeVos announced new guidance today which will make it harder for schools to hold students accountable for sexual violence and harder for sexual assault survivors to come forward and continue their education in a safe environment. The interim guidance would also drastically minimize the role the Department's Office for Civil Rights ( OCR ) plays in investigating schools' responses to sexual violence, stepping back from the proactive enforcement role OCR took in the years following the 2011 guidance.

"The purpose of Title IX has always been to protect students and ensure everyone is treated fairly, equitably and with respect at school," said Noreen Farrell, Executive Director of Equal Rights Advocates. "Today's announcement from the Department of Education marks the latest in a series of attacks on civil rights by the Trump Administration. By rescinding strong Title IX guidance and replacing it with an interim guidance that focuses more on perpetrators than survivors, Secretary DeVos is threatening years of progress made to end sexual violence in education. Sexual violence in education is a civil rights violation that must be taken seriously."

Advocates noted that, despite myths perpetuated by Secretary DeVos, Title IX already requires schools to ensure a fair process for both survivors and those accused of assault, and provides greater protection for students than due process standards under the U.S. Constitution. The guidance issued in 2011 was widely requested by school officials and has been effectively used to investigate reports of assault. Hundreds of thousands of people have called on the Department of Education, through a previous comment collection process, to keep the original guidance in place.

"The Department of Education's interim guidance shows that the Trump Administration is more interested in protecting the small group of students who claim they were falsely accused of sexual assault than the thousands of students sexually assaulted each year," said Adele Kimmel, Senior Attorney for Public Justice. "If the Department truly cared about students' civil rights, it would not rescind the 2011 guidance, it would enforce it. The 2011 guidance rescinded today was requested by schools and was working well when implemented correctly. It required schools to treat all parties in a campus sexual assault investigation fairly. The new interim guidance instead favors the rights of accused students. This is a dangerous step backwards that will have very real, and serious, consequences for the students Secretary DeVos and her agency are charged to protect."

Policy and legal advocates are encouraging parents, students and school officials to let DeVos know what they think of the new, harmful guidance. "Those of us who know, firsthand, the damage this new guidance will inflict on students have an obligation to speak up," said Abby Honold, a sexual assault survivor and alumna of the University of Minnesota. "Secretary DeVos cannot pretend to care about students while trying to rollback policies that encouraged survivors to come forward and helped schools hold perpetrators accountable."

"Today's announcement will have a devastating impact on students and schools across the country. It will discourage students from reporting assaults, create uncertainty for schools on how to follow the law, and make campuses less safe," said Fatima Goss Graves, President and CEO of the National Women's Law Center.

"Rescinding the Dear Colleague letter is counterproductive, if the goal of the administration and these proposed changes is in fact to seek ways to more effectively address and adjudicate sexual misconduct in colleges, universities in schools. Unfortunately, there's little reason to assume that is the goal. Rather, it seems the administration wants to stir up culture-war conversations, smear the integrity of survivors, and cause more confusion regarding how to effectively address sexual misconduct at schools. Schools need clear guidance. Students need robust enforcement of Title IX," said Terry L. Fromson, Managing Attorney at the Women's Law Project.

"This is a blatant rollback of strong guidance that was making real progress in the fight to end sexual violence," said Kim Churches, CEO of the American Association of University Women ( AAUW ). "The Department of Education should have heeded the recently submitted comments-including more than 10,000 from AAUW advocates-urging them to protect Title IX. The department's willingness to ignore the overwhelming grassroots to national support for Title IX, its regulations, and prior guidance is proof that the agenda was not to listen and take into account input from the community, but rather to move forward with a predetermined plan of action. Make no mistake, we will continue to stand with survivors and vigorously defend Title IX."

In a joint statement signed by 129 education, legal and policy advocates, the coalition said that DeVos is "taking away much needed tools and resources," adding that "her focus is wrong and dangerous." The statement goes on to say that, "Instead of continuing to address the violence and discrimination experienced by the thousands of students who are sexually assaulted yearly, she has directed her attention to a small group of students who claim to have been falsely accused."

"By utterly failing to engage students who have been sexually assaulted or to reach out to schools and account for the challenges they face," the group says, "Secretary DeVos has ruled by decree."

For a copy of the full coalition statement, and more information on Title IX and sexual assault issues, visit www.EqualRights.org, www.PublicJustice.net or www.NWLC.org .


facebook twitter google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

World news: Olympic resolution, 'LGBTQ Poland' book, Canada's apology 2017-11-20 - All 193 United Nations member-states adopted the Olympic Truce Resolution maintaining language protecting against discrimination based on sexual orientation, a press release noted. ...


Gay News

National roundup: Tyler Clementi, Victory Fund, Republican busted 2017-11-20 - At The Tyler Clementi Foundation's Upstander Legacy Celebration, Mitchell Gold, co-founder and co-chair of Faith in America, and Jane Clementi, co-founder and co-chair ...


Gay News

Dr. Kathleen Robbins appointed to IL Senate Task Force on Discrimination, Harassment 2017-11-19 - Brian C. Johnson, CEO of Equality Illinois, the state's LGBTQ civil rights organization, released the following statement. We applaud the appointment of ...


Gay News

Same-sex prep4love ads targeted by vandals 2017-11-19 - Posters in the prep4love advertising campaign—launched last year by the Chicago PrEP Working Group ( CPWG ), an ad-hoc coalition of advocates and ...


Gay News

HRC & Trans People of Color Coalition: Fatal violence against trans community rising 2017-11-17 - WASHINGTON - Today, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) Foundation and the Trans People of Color Coalition ( TPOCC ) released A ...


Gay News

Rally Nov. 16 for release of father with health issues from detention center 2017-11-16 - After eight months in detention, a Chicago father's health conditions have worsened drastically and his family and community are demanding his release before ...


Gay News

Community groups to boycott the Magnificent Mile on Black Friday 2017-11-15 - Members of churches, unions, and community organizations will fan out from the Water Tower at 806 N. Michigan Ave. onto the Magnificent Mile ...


Gay News

LGBTQ and HIV intimate partner violence report released 2017-11-15 - The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs ( NCAVP ) released its report today on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and HIV-Affected Intimate Partner ...


Gay News

Australians approve marriage equality 2017-11-15 - Australia has voted to change the definition of marriage to include same-sex couples in results announced Nov. 15, with 61.6 percent of the ...


Gay News

Leadership Conference opposes Don Willett for 5 Circuit Court of Appeals 2017-11-14 - November 14, 2017 Dear Senator: On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Hum­­­­an Rights, a coalition of more ...


 



Copyright © 2017 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.