Resist DeVos’s Proposed Changes To Title IX In Order To Protect Survivors
November 19, 2018-- The U.S. Department of Education proposed drastic changes to the rules regarding how colleges handle sexual misconduct claims, bolstering the rights of the accused. Betsy DeVos, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education, says the changes to Title IX are necessary to restore “due process”.
DeVos redefines sexual harassment as sexual conduct that is “severe”, “pervasive” and “objectively offensive”. In doing so, she narrows the legal framework of Title IX, and prevents many survivors from seeking justice. Many more survivors will be silenced because schools do not have to investigate claims of misconduct that occur off school grounds. The changes also mandate that survivors go through the formal channels when filing complaints, ignoring the fact that most students only feel comfortable reporting to a trusted adult.
When it comes to Title IX, “due process” cannot come at the expense of justice for survivors. The proposed changes decrease the likelihood that survivors come forward, are believes, and attain justice. As College Democrats of New York, we will only support Title IX policies that make survivors feel comfortable coming forward.
To prevent DeVos’s proposal from becoming law, we must make our voices heard during the 60-day public comment period. Go to handsoffix.org for further instructions. Call your members of Congress, and speak with your school administration and student government to let them know you oppose DeVos’s proposed changes.