“The resulting Title IX guidance, known commonly as the Dear Colleague Letter, encouraged a wave of student- and survivor-driven activism across the country.
As part of this activism, the Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights received hundreds of complaints from survivors nationwide, and numerous schools have changed their policies and procedures to better respond to sexual misconduct.
Title IX Coordinators have been hired, campus law enforcement has been trained, court cases have awarded judgments to victims, and media have exposed long-standing scandals at many institutions.
In short, the prospect for justice became a reality for campus sexual assault survivors in this country thanks to Title IX.
This is why, upon graduating from law school in 2014, I founded SurvJustice — the only national nonprofit organization providing legal services to victims across the country in campus hearings.
Having received my moment of justice back in 2011, I went on to secure the right for both victims and those they have accused to have attorneys as advisers during campus hearings across the country, through the passage of the 2013 Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act.
Not only did that law ensure advisers for both parties, it also ensured that both parties were entitled to prompt, fair and impartial hearings, with the ability to access evidence and call witnesses.
In short, the law bolstered important steps taken by Title IX to ensure a fair process for both victims and those accused.
Despite federal legislation and policy requiring schools to better prevent and address campus sexual violence, there has been a growing backlash to protect the impunity rapists have enjoyed for centuries.
Those who oppose Title IX claim that it denies the right of due process to accused students by misguided comparisons to criminal due process protections.
This is nonsense.
Courts have repeatedly found minimum due procedural safeguards sufficient under the 14th Amendment for disciplinary matters handled through campus-level hearings.
While there is a contingent of due-process advocates asking for additional procedural protections, this can be accomplished without rescinding Title IX protections.
The rescission is coming because too much of the conversation has been driven by men’s rights groups and other rape denialists who claim that the pendulum has swung too far in protecting the rights of victims (often women).
In truth, the pendulum hasn’t yet swung nearly far enough.”
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