What is Title IX?
Title IX of the Education Amendments is a federal civil rights law that essentially forbids gender-based discriminatory acts committed by or against students, staff, and faculty in federally funded educational institutions. It provides the following:
“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”
The enactment and enforcement of this law have settled an abundance of controversial gender equality issues that once plagued colleges and universities. Because of Title IX, there has been an expansion of women's intercollegiate sports options, and in an effort to maintain equity, more schools have provided proportional athletic scholarship offers for female athletes in comparison to male athletes. Alongside these changes is the law's justification of implementing school guidelines threatening repercussions upon staff and faculty that mistreated pregnant women and new moms attending college courses.
However, although many can acknowledge that much has been accomplished by the application of this law, some people are posing questions of its efficacy in regard to reported instances of sexual misconduct across college and university campuses nationwide.
Title IX and Sexual Assault
Unfortunately, sexual misconduct in all of its variations - sexual assault, sexual harassment, rape etc. - has been reported at staggering rates in higher education institutions. Under Title IX, these offenses are characterized as gender-based discrimination, and schools in compliance with this law (most schools) are obligated to mitigate these issues by investigating and disciplining students found guilty of said crimes. But with this great responsibility came a resistance from some schools to tend to such cases, as they felt a sense of incompetency when navigating through the intricate complexities and emotional aspects of sexual misconduct.
In 2011, the Department of Education issued a statement warning these federally funded educations that financial assistance will be discontinued for colleges and universities that continued to sweep sexual misconduct allegations under the rug. Around the same time, students began to impose repercussions of their own by pursuing legal action when they felt their accusations were neglected by schools. In reaction to these looming threats, schools drastically changed their approach to these threats by handling them aggressively and hastily in an effort to appease the DOE and accused students. But in the process of these pacifying approaches, accused students are left at a disadvantage. Schools have been known eradicate evidence or omit information about the claims brought against accused students to avoid complicating cases.
Choosing an Attorney as Your Title IX Advisor
Unfortunately, schools don't always play by their own rules. These deviations from their own code of conduct or Title IX policy can ultimately leave you, as an accused student, out of the loop. This is why it's important that you take advantage of your freedom to choose anyone to be your Title IX advisor. Choosing an attorney to occupy this role has many benefits. The tools that they've acquired through trial experience will prove to be useful to you as you navigate through your school's processes. With the help of a legal professional, you will be able to defend yourself in a way that is effective and consistent with your account of the perceived sexual misconduct.
Experienced Washington DC Title IX Advisor
If you attend a Washington, D.C., college or university and have been accused of sexual misconduct, you should immediately consult with an experienced professional dedicated to making certain your interests are protected. Skilled Title IX advisor Joseph D. Lento is here to help you every step of the way. Contact him today.
Washington D.C. colleges and universities where Joseph D. Lento can help as your or your student's Title IX advisor during investigations, hearings, and appeals include, but are not limited to, the following schools:
- American University
- Catholic University of America
- Corcoran College of Art and Design
- Gallaudet University
- George Washington University
- Georgetown University
- Howard University
- Potomac College Washington
- Trinity Washington University
- University of the District of Columbia
- University of Phoenix - Washington DC Campus
Title IX violations and Title IX charges can change an accused student's life if not defended against properly and as early as possible during the disciplinary process, and Joseph D. Lento has nearly a decade of experience passionately fighting for the future of his clients at universities and colleges throughout the nation. He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead, prioritizes his clients' needs and well-being. Joseph Lento is a licensed attorney in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, is admitted as an attorney pro hac vice in state and federal court if needed when representing clients nationwide, and serves as a Title IX advisor and educational consultant to students facing disciplinary cases in Washington, D.C., and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected - Contact National Title IX attorney Joseph D. Lento today.