What is Title IX?
Congress passed Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 to protect people from discrimination in education programs or activities which receive federal financial assistance based on sex:
No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.
While this is often used in the context of sports, that is certainly not the only application of Title IX. First, anyone who believes there has been an act of discrimination based on sex, regardless of whether the act was against them, can file a complaint for Title IX. They can do so as long as they are affected by a “general hostile sexual environment.” A person filing a complaint under Title IX can do it through the government or the courts.
Title IX it falls under the authority of the Department of Education. The DoE has created a special Office for Civil Rights whose sole purpose is to monitor and ensure compliance with Title IX and investigate complaints alleging violations of the measure. The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is headquartered in Washington, D.C. and maintains 12 regional offices across the country.
Who does Title IX protect?
Title IX protects men, women and gender non-conforming individuals, regardless of whether they are staff, students or faculty. Title IX also grants rights to pregnant individuals who cannot be discriminated against because of their pregnancy.
Title IX and Sexual violence
Sexual violence triggers certain obligations by academic institutions under Title IX. One of those obligations is that such institutions respond promptly and effectively to accusations of sexual violence, including promptly addressing the complaint and investigating what happened. Even if a victim chooses to report the matter to local law enforcement, that does not excuse the school from its Title IX obligations.
What schools are covered by Title IX?
Title IX exists to protect individuals attending or working at all federally funded educational institutions, which means that it covers all elementary, middle and high schools, as well as colleges and universities. Title IX also applies to any program or activity affiliated with an institution that receives federal funds, including school-sponsored internships.
How We Handle Title IX Violations?
The firm partners with Title IX experts to litigate Title IX violations. These are highly specialized cases so the firm taps into networks of contract attorneys to find the right attorneys to work on your matter. We look forward to hearing from you.