A federal civil rights statute, Title IX strictly prohibits any gender-based bias or discrimination against anyone in a higher education institution. This includes students, staff and faculty members. Schools are required to swiftly respond to any cases by beginning an investigation and reprimanding, or placing disciplinary actions, against the accused. This discrimination covers a broad range of possible circumstances, but lately it has been largely applied to sexual misconduct.
Because Title IX considers sexual misconduct to be gender based discrimination, schools are required to handle these cases immediately after they are reported. Anyone that is a part of the college, whether it is students, staff, or faculty, will have to step through the same Title IX processes.
It is imperative to contact a knowledgeable attorney to handle your case if you are a faculty or staff member that has been accused of violating Title IX.
How Complaints are Handled
Title IX outlines specific procedures that a school must follow should any member of the student or staff bodies violate it. Teacher’s aides, graduate assistants, professors, coaches and any other member of the campus will also have to step through the Title IX process if they are accused. If you have been accused, these are the rights you are to be granted:
- The school must promptly and thoroughly investigate any allegations and the evidence presented from both parties
- Open access to the school’s policies on sexual misconduct and Title IX policies
- Privacy to the extent that the college policy allows
- Treated respectfully and with dignity throughout the process
- To be fully notified of any allegations, resolutions, and the outcome of the appeals process
Though it is expected that schools should follow their rules clearly and concisely, it doesn’t always happen. Hearings can be rushed, leaving the accused with inadequate time to prepare their case. An attorney can send a litigation letter to hold schools accountable to their own rules and Title IX policies. This warns them that legal action will be pursued if the unfair treatment continues.
Employees and Mandatory Reporting
Employees of higher learning institutions are required by law to responsibly report any instance where they perceive that sexual misconduct could be occurring. It could be that they witnessed an interaction, overheard an incident, or a student confided in them. As a mandatory reporter of Title IX violations, they are required to report these perceived events, even if it is just hearsay, to the Title IX coordinator. Failing to do so can lead to charges against them.
Manchester & Associates Defense
Title IX violations can place entire futures in jeopardy. A skilled attorney is crucial to facing these allegations and winning. Contact Manchester & Associates today for help if you are an employee of a higher learning institution and have been accused of violating Title IX or failing to report an incident.
Click on any of the following schools to learn more about their specific Title IX model and procedures. Whether you are an employee or student, the disciplinary case will typically follow a very similar process:
- Bloomsburg University
- Bucknell University
- Juniata College
- Lycoming College
- Mansfield University
- Penn College
- Pennsylvania State University
- Pennsylvania State University Altoona
- Susquehanna University