ACLU Files a Lawsuit for an Organization that’s Unconcerned with the Rights of People Accused of Title IX Violations

Posted by Joseph D. Lento | Jul 18, 2020 | 0 Comments

On May 14, 2020, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a lawsuit indirectly attacking the civil liberties of students accused of sexual assault on behalf of four organizations: Know Your IX, Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates Inc., Girls for Gender Equity, and Stop Sexual Assault in Schools.

Of the groups, only Know Your IX has played the most prominent role in the debate about due process and campus sexual assault, and how courts and schools should balance the important interests and rights on both sides of the debate.

The lawsuit filed by the ACLU has received a lot of criticism, in particular, because it says that accused students be found guilty even if the evidence of innocence is almost as strong as the evidence of guilt. The lawsuit also demands a more sweeping definition of sexual harassment than the one prescribed in the regulations issued by the U.S. Department of Education under Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

Know Your IX was co-founded by Amherst graduate Dana Bolger and Yale graduate Alexandra Brodsky, who were inspired to start the organization after claiming that their alma maters had mishandled their own claims of sexual assault on campus. Bolger's and Brodsky's organization has taken some of the most aggressive stances on the campus sexual assault issue, even arguing that Title IX regulations—which have led to widespread objections that due process rights for the accused were being trampled—were actually biased against accusers.

In the years since Title IX was expanded under President Obama, public awareness has continually grown that the approach to campus sexual assault and harassment had gone too far. But even after nearly 600 lawsuits from accused students have been filed, with more than 170 favorable rulings for people who were accused under Title IX and more than 100 pre-decision settlements, Know Your IX has persisted in calling for fewer rights for the accused.

In a comment submitted to the Department of Education's Kenneth L. Marcus, the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Know Your IX argued against using the clear and convincing standard. This is a standard that many due process advocates believe is a critical part of the Title IX process to preserve the rights of the accused. But in Know Your IX's comment to Marcus, they suggested that the harm done to someone wrongly accused of sexual assault is no greater than the harm done to a rape victim whose assailant is wrongly found not guilty.

Know Your IX has, time and again, shown itself to be not as concerned with even-handed justice as with tilting the scales toward accusers. The ACLU, on the other hand, is an organization that was founded to protect the rights of all, even the accused. The implication in the ACLU agreeing to file the lawsuit with Know Your IX is that the ACLU shares Know Your IX's priorities.

If you have been accused of a Title IX violation, you need a lawyer who understands Title IX defense. Call the Lento Law Firm today to schedule your consultation, 888-535-3686.

About the Author

Joseph D. Lento

"I pride myself on having heart and driving hard to get results!" Attorney Joseph D. Lento passionately fights for the futures of his clients nationwide. Attorney Lento and his team represent students and others in disciplinary cases and various other proceedings at colleges and universities across the United States. Attorney Lento has helped countless students, professors, and others in academia at more than a thousand colleges and universities across the United States, and when necessary, he and his team have sought justice on behalf of clients in courts across the nation. He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead prioritizes his clients' needs and well-being. Joseph D. Lento is licensed in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, is admitted pro hac vice as needed nationwide, and he can help you or your student address any school-related issue or concern anywhere in the United States.


There are no comments for this post. Be the first and Add your Comment below.

Leave a Comment

Contact Us Today!


If you, or your student, are facing any kind of disciplinary action, or other negative academic sanction, and are having feelings of uncertainty and anxiety for what the future may hold, contact the Lento Law Firm today, and let us help secure your academic career.

This website was created only for general information purposes. It is not intended to be construed as legal advice for any situation. Only a direct consultation with a licensed Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York attorney can provide you with formal legal counsel based on the unique details surrounding your situation. The pages on this website may contain links and contact information for third party organizations - the Lento Law Firm does not necessarily endorse these organizations nor the materials contained on their website. In Pennsylvania, Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout Pennsylvania's 67 counties, including, but not limited to Philadelphia, Allegheny, Berks, Bucks, Carbon, Chester, Dauphin, Delaware, Lancaster, Lehigh, Monroe, Montgomery, Northampton, Schuylkill, and York County. In New Jersey, attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout New Jersey's 21 counties: Atlantic, Bergen, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Salem, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren County, In New York, Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout New York's 62 counties. Outside of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, unless attorney Joseph D. Lento is admitted pro hac vice if needed, his assistance may not constitute legal advice or the practice of law. The decision to hire an attorney in Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania counties, New Jersey, New York, or nationwide should not be made solely on the strength of an advertisement. We invite you to contact the Lento Law Firm directly to inquire about our specific qualifications and experience. Communicating with the Lento Law Firm by email, phone, or fax does not create an attorney-client relationship. The Lento Law Firm will serve as your official legal counsel upon a formal agreement from both parties. Any information sent to the Lento Law Firm before an attorney-client relationship is made is done on a non-confidential basis.