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 Nazareth College 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 Nazareth College's disciplinary process and why you need an attorney-advisor if you find yourself in this predicament.
Nazareth College's Disciplinary Process
According to Title IX, Nazareth College is required to adjudicate any cases of sexual misconduct brought to the institution's attention. The Department of Education urges compliant higher education institutions like Nazareth College 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.
When the College receives a report of alleged sexual misconduct, the Title IX Coordinator will make an initial assessment of any risk of harm to individuals or to the campus community and will take necessary action to address those risks. The purpose of an assessment is to:
- Assess the nature and circumstances of the allegation
- Address the immediate physical safety and emotional well-being of the complainant
- Notify parties of the importance of preservation of evidence
- Notify parties of the range of interim accommodations and responses
- Assess for pattern evidence or other similar conduct
The investigator(s) will conduct the investigation in a manner appropriate in light of the circumstances of the case, which will typically include interviews with the complainant, the respondent, and any witnesses. The interviews will be supplemented by the gathering of any physical, documentary, and other evidence, as appropriate and available.
At the conclusion of the investigation, the investigator(s) will prepare a report setting forth the facts gathered and an evaluation of the reliability of the information presented.
Determination After Investigation
Following the conclusion of the investigation, the Title IX Coordinator will review the investigative report and determine whether there is sufficient cause to believe that the alleged sexual misconduct may have occurred, warranting further review of the matter. If so, the Title IX Coordinator will prepare a notice of charge(s) based on information contained in the investigative report.
A panel composed of faculty, staff, and/or the student body will hear statements from all parties and resolve a complaint.
The parties have the right to direct an appeal to the Associate Vice President for Student Development. Students have no later than five business days after the delivery of the decision to submit an appeal. An appeal may be requested if the student believes one or more of the following conditions exists:
• the discovery of previously unavailable relevant evidence that could significantly impact the finding of the hearing;
• procedural error(s) that had a material impact on the fairness of the hearing; and/or
• the sanctions imposed were substantially disproportionate to the violation committed.
New York Title IX Attorney
If you've been accused of sexual misconduct at Nazareth College, 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 at 888-535-3686 for help.