Yale was under federal investigation from April to September of this year after an alumnus filed a complaint with the federal Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights alleging that the University discriminated against him in its Title IX procedures because he was a man. The case alleges “John Doe,” first experienced discrimination in the fall of 2013 after he submitted an essay that included a discussion of the impulses that might drive someone to commit rape. A teaching assistant reported him to Yale’s Title IX office. Yale then prohibited Doe from contacting the TA and required him to attend sensitivity training. After Doe graduated in May 2015, Doe filed complaints both in federal district court and with the regional OCR branch in Boston alleging that Yale had violated his Title IX rights. On April 17, 2017, it became one of the first civil rights violation cases taken up by the Department of Education under President Donald Trump.
yaledailynews By Sweedler and Schick
The “Yes Means Yes” bill was a big deal when Jerry Brown, the governor of California, signed it into law in 2014. It made California the first state to pass an “affirmative consent” law requiring all parties to get consent for each touch each time; silence can not be interpreted as consent. Now, it seems, Brown is not so certain about what has been wrought. This week, in an unexpected move, Brown vetoed a new bill that would have broadened the definitions and rules regarding alleged sexual misconduct for students attending California colleges and universities. Brown wrote he could not endorse the bill because of troubling concerns that have arisen in recent years. He noted that since he signed Yes Means Yes, “thoughtful legal minds have increasingly questioned whether federal and state actions to prevent and redress sexual harassment and assault—well-intentioned as they are—have also unintentionally resulted in some colleges’ failure to uphold due process for accused students.”
theatlantic.com By Emily Yoffe
UNC: Accuser & Lawyer Doctor Evidence. Hickeys Magically Turn 2 Bruises. Ruins Innocent-Accused Allen Artis
The secrecy of campus sexual-assault investigations and resolutions has kept outrageous examples of violated due process and kangaroo tribunals largely out of the news – until litigation gets filed and drags on. Ashe Schow has turned in a worthwhile deep dive into a single incident between a white female and black male at the University of North Carolina. What stands out in this case, is the school’s somewhat fair treatment of the black male – and the accuser’s blind pursuit of criminal charges and unfounded accusations against UNC when the evidence largely ran against her…Evidence that only favored her, it turns out, when her lawyer apparently altered it.
www.thecollegefix By Greg Piper
California Governor Jerry Brown vetoed SB169, there by refusing to codifying 2011 Obama era guidelines. Thank you Jerry for supporting the presumption of innocence! Read Gov. Brown’s veto statement here.
Dear Governor Brown,
I am a long time California resident, attorney and Co President of Families Advocating for Campus Equality (FACE), a nonprofit formed to provide support and advocacy to innocent students wrongfully suspended or expelled from their college and university campuses following Title IX disciplinary proceedings.
Today I am asking you please, please veto SB-169.
Do not stop reading because you think you know what I’m about to say, because you do not know the half of what I have seen, and how many times I have been brought to tears by the destruction the Title IX machine has left in its wake.
Most Americans would be stunned to learn how Title IX disciplinary processes are conducted on many campuses, and those who have learned cannot fathom that such Kafkaesque “trials” are allowed to occur in our country, land of the free and fair.
In the past three-plus years hundreds of students and some professors have contacted FACE after experiencing result-driven Title IX disciplinary processes in which school officials have: refused to disclose details of the conduct of which they’ve been accused; denied them access to the very same evidence relied on to find them responsible; refused them the opportunity to question their accusers and witnesses; relied on hearsay and other evidence inadmissible in any other adjudicatory arena; ignored their lack of harmful intent or good faith beliefs; and dispensed with any presumption that the student may actually be innocent.
Denied the protections which normally accompany the use of the required (under California law) preponderance standard of evidence, innocent students are routinely found “more likely than not” to have committed what, more often than not, is not a crime, but a technical violation of the school’s conduct code. For this they earn lengthy suspensions or expulsions.
Though FACE representatives met personally with the SB-169’s sponsor Sen. Jackson, the Senator refused to acknowledge or even consider that students most tragically affected by these one-sided proceedings are the underserved, minorities and scholarship students, most of whom have worked diligently to rise above the circumstances into which they were born.
When faced with Title IX investigations, these innocent students believed the advice, variations of which they’ve heard their entire lives, that they should “just tell the truth and you’ll be fine.”
Unfortunately, these young students – often just 18 or 19 years old – are blindsided by experienced campus attorneys and administrators who effectively act as their prosecutor, compiling evidence and testimony only to establish their guilt, while denying them access to an equivalently experienced advocate or attorney because their families do not have the resources to retain one. Imagine constructing your own defense at that age. The consequences of this David v. Goliath farce are students left with no opportunity to complete their education, loss of a promised career and significant loans to pay for a diploma they will never receive.
No wonder an African American mother told me that, to them, “it’s just more of the same.”
Perhaps even more tragically, the foundation on which these students have relied since childhood, the promise of a better future and their belief in the American sense of justice, is destroyed. Disturbingly, many attempt suicide, some successfully, many, many are hospitalized and most suffer significant life-long trauma, PTSD and anxiety. Some have psychotic breakdowns and, in at least one case, a California college student developed schizophrenia, documented to have occurred as a direct result of the traumatic Title IX process he endured at his college.
When will this stop?
When will our representatives realize the lives of our children are being lost, destroyed, permanently and irrevocably changed?
When will our legislators take off their political hats and, as human beings, open their eyes to see the resulting destruction of promising young, innocent lives, not only in California but across this entire country?
Governor Brown, will you be the hero who opens your eyes to help stop this madness?
Cynthia P Garrett
FACE Co President
San Diego, California
The Title IX Inquisition of today is largely the product of a small group of ideological feminists. The legal case against USC is complex and massive. There are at least nine lawsuits at the Superior Court level, all by male respondents who have contested the fairness of their sanctions. Much of the Title IX investigative/adjudicative power is concentrated in the hands of two highly biased individuals, Kegan Allee and Gretchen Means. The damage caused by their extremist politics is significant. Multiple star athletes have already been ruined by their Title IX policy…The enrollment rate for male students at USC has dropped down to ~45%, an unprecedented low, for 2016-17.
titleixforall.com By John Doe
Proskauer’s Higher Education group released a report on lawsuits brought by students accused of sexual misconduct. Their report reviews 130 federal and state court complaints filed by students across the country between January 2011 and December 2016 who claim violation of their rights during a Title IX investigation.
Since April 2011, at least 188 students accused of sexual misconduct at universities around the country have brought lawsuits alleging that they were unfairly treated in their schools’ adjudication processes. As I’ve noted in the past, these lawsuits typically include one or more of the following three claims: 1) denial of constitutional due process rights (at public universities); 2) sex discrimination in violation of Title IX; and 3) breach of contract. Traditionally, courts have deferred to universities’ judgment, but as these cases have proliferated over the past few years, a number of courts recognize the unusually high stakes and have held that schools must offer at least the most basic elements of a fair procedure before labeling students as sex offenders.
thefire.org By Samantha Harris
University of North Carolina football player Allen Artis hit it off with Delaney Robinson. That night they had sex — that is not in dispute. Much else would be though, after she lodged a rape accusation. Most of the case remained out of public view until it was resolved this summer. Police, court and campus documents obtained by RealClearInvestigations, as well as exclusive interviews offer a rare inside look at the complex dynamics of sexual assault accusations and justice on American campuses. They illuminate a dense and murky landscape where the “he said, she said” vagaries of sexual consent are exacerbated not only by drugs and alcohol but politically charged campus rape-response procedures.
realclearinvestigations.com By Ashe Schow