Title IX of the Education Amendments is a federal law that prohibits sexual misconduct in federally funded colleges and universities. Being accused of sexual assault, sexual harassment, rape, or any other form of sexual misconduct at the College of Mount Saint Vincent is a Title IX violation that your school must resolve. If you are found “responsible” for this conduct, you could be exposed to pretty serious repercussions that could jeopardize your plans to graduate.
For the purposes of this article, we'll address the College of Mount Saint Vincent's disciplinary process and why you need an attorney-advisor if you find yourself in this predicament.
College of Mount Saint Vincent's Disciplinary Process
Under Title IX, the College of Mount Saint Vincent is required to adjudicate any cases of sexual misconduct brought to the institution's attention. The Department of Education urges compliant higher education institutions to respond to these accusations in a manner that is prompt and equitable. If the school fails to do so, its federal funding is at stake. Complainants (the reporter of the complaint) and especially respondents (the person accused of sexual misconduct) should understand that their school will approach their case with the utmost seriousness, and each party should follow suit.
Reporting Sexual Misconduct
Every member of the faculty, administration, and staff, including student workers, is obligated by law under Title IX to immediately report to the Title IX Coordinator incidents of or perceived incidents of sexual misconduct involving any member of the campus community upon learning of the incident.
An initial meeting may include a discussion of any appropriate accommodations to be made due to these allegations. This meeting is also an opportunity for the accuser to decide how he or she wants to proceed. The options include pursuing the complaint within the College and/or with local law enforcement or requesting the complaint remain confidential.
In investigating the complaint, the Title IX Coordinator shall discuss the allegations in the complaint with the respondent and the complainant at separate meetings, and provide them both equal opportunities to identify witnesses and present evidence supporting their respective positions at these meetings.
The hearing will be led by a 3-person panel, who will facilitate statements made by each party and a questioning period for clarification. When all statements are heard and all questions are answered, the panel will make a determination based on the preponderance of evidence.
All requests for a final appeal must be submitted in writing to the Title IX Coordinator or designee within five business days of the delivery of the written findings of the Hearing Panel. Either party may appeal, but appeals are limited to the following:
- A procedural error or omission occurred that significantly impacted the outcome of the Hearing or the sanction imposed;
- New evidence, unknown or not reasonably available during the investigation or Hearing, that could substantially impact the original finding;
- Review of whether sanctions imposed are substantially disproportionate to the severity of the violation.
New York Title IX Attorney
If you've been accused of sexual misconduct at the College of Mount Saint Vincent, you can choose anyone to be your advisor in the Title IX process. It would be in your best interest to choose an attorney who can help you effectively navigate the process and build a solid defense for you. Contact attorney Joseph D. Lento today for help at 888-535-3686.