Title IX

Title IX

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is a comprehensive federal law that protects people from discrimination based on sex in education programs or activities which receive Federal financial assistance. The law prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded education program or activity. Title IX applies to traditional educational institutions such as colleges, universities, including SUNY campuses. Under Title IX of the Educational Amendments Act of 1972, colleges and universities are required to develop procedures to respond to claims of sexual harassment.

Title IX states: No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

Compliance Developments


Applicable Laws and Regulations

Laws

Federal

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (40 U.S.C. §2000e)

Title IX of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (20 U.S.C. §1681)

New York State Law

New York State Article 129-B, Implementation by Colleges and Universities of sexual Assault, Dating Violence, Domestic Violence, and Stalking Prevention and Response Policies and Procedures, “Enough is Enough," passed July 7, 2015.  
New law establishes new requirements for New York State Colleges’ and Universities’ responses to reports of sexual misconduct.  Deadline for compliance with "Enough is Enough" law for SUNY and all New York higher education institutions is October 5th, 90 days after the law was passed.

Regulations

29 C.F.R. Part 1604 EEOC Guidelines on Discrimination Because of Sex

29 C.F.R. Part 1604.11 Sexual Harassment

34 C.F.R. Part 106 Department of Education Regulations on Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Sex in Education Programs or Activities Receiving Federal Financial Assistance

SUNY Policies and Procedures

SUNY Information and Resources on Title IX

Guidance

SUNY Sexual Assault & Violence Resources (SAVR)
SUNY released a custom “Sexual Assault & Violence Resources (SAVR)” web-based tool to support victims to support victims of sexual assault or interpersonal violence, whether the victim attends a SUNY school or lives in any one of New York State’s communities.  Both tools can be customized for use by states and colleges nationally at no cost; and they can be found easily by typing “SUNY SAVR” or any combination of “SUNY Sexual Assault & Violence Resources” into the Google search engine.

VAWA Customizable Visa and Immigration Resource
This document, a collaborative effort of attorneys and professionals from institutions across the country, is a plain language explanation of visa and immigration options for students who are victims or survivors of sexual or interpersonal violence. The resource is available to SUNY institutions and higher education institutions throughout the country.  The resource web site includes two methods for customizing the document with automatic translation into all available languages.  Institutions may use the Excel form/spreadsheet or the Google Docs method.  Step-by-step instructions are included on the web site.

A Plain Language Explanation of Distinctions Between the New York State Penal Law and the College Disciplinary Processes
The 2015 NYS legislation creating Article 129-B requires that college or other officials explain differences between the college process and the criminal justice process in addressing sexual and interpersonal violence.  There are significant differences between the two systems because they have different, important goals. In the criminal justice system, prosecutors pursue cases when they believe there is sufficient evidence to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that an individual has committed a criminal act. A person who is convicted of a crime will face criminal penalties, such as incarceration, probation, or the imposition of a fine. The college disciplinary process seeks to determine whether an individual has violated college policy. In this process, a preponderance of the evidence standard of proof is used to determine responsibility. A person who is found to have violated college policy may be suspended, expelled or otherwise restricted from full participation in the college community.

Model MOU between a New York State college and a Rape Crisis Center, 

Negotiated and finalized by SUNY, the NYS Department of Health, NYSCASA and the NYC Alliance, URL: http://system.suny.edu/sexual-violence-prevention-workgroup/mou-model/.  Pursuant to funding distributed under Education Law 129-B, funded organizations must develop an MOU with their partner colleges.

 

Policy and Programming Changes Pursuant to the Campus SaVE Provisions of the Violence Against Women Act

Guidance Document written by the Office of General Counsel State University of New York
Includes information on complying with the Violence Against Women Act and the SUNY-created model policies for complying with Campus SaVE Provisions of the Violence Against Women Act

Reporting Guidelines for Clery CSA’s and Title IX Responsible Employees‌, A guidance document prepared by Counsel's Office that clarifies CSA and Responsible Employee reporting for purposes of Clery and Title IX.  The document was written by SUNY Office of General Counsel Associate Counsel Andrea Stagg and Associate Counsel Joseph Storch.

Rules Surrounding Notification Following Student Conduct Hearings - A SUNY guidance document prepared by Counsel's Office clarifying information can be shared with certain parties following student conduct hearings, and the legal basis for the information sharing.  The sharing of information will depend upon the type of conduct alleged, and the outcome of the Conduct Hearing.  The document was written by SUNY Office of General Counsel Associate Counsel Andrea Stagg and Associate Counsel Joseph Storch.

A 2013 Voluntary Resolution Agreement between SUNY and the Office for Civil Rights of the United States Department of Education also outlines requirements that SUNY campuses must adhere to for purposes of compliance with Title IX, which are codified in the new System-wide Policies on Sexual Violence Prevention and Response.

Distilling the April 29, 2014 OCR Questions & Answers on Title IX and Sexual Violence, prepared by Associate Counsel Andrea Stagg
Summary guidance document of the Department of Education’s April 29, 2014 guidance -  highlights the key points of each question and answer.

Article, Accommodating Pregnant Students on SUNY Campuses, by Seth Gilbertson, Associate Counsel, SUNY Office of General Counsel, published in the General Counsel Update Number Eleven (August 15, 2013).

SUNY Webpages

SUNY Sexual Violence Prevention Workgroup webpage, created by a Resolution requested by Governor Cuomo and passed at a SUNY Board of Trustees meeting  which created the SUNY Policies on Sexual Violence Prevention and Response.

SUNY University Life webpage on Sexual Assault Prevention Resources

SUNY Compliance Website Related pages: Clery Act , Violence Against Women ActCampus Crime Reporting LawNYS Ed. Law Article 129-A and 129-B Certification

References to Best Practices and Other Supplemental Material

State Resources

New York State Enough is Enough Website with Information and Hotline
The New York State website includes information on the new Enough is Enough Article 129-B law and related information.  
The website also includes information on a Hotline for immediate help:

National Resources

NotAlone.gov
A federal government website that contains information for students, schools, and anyone interested in finding resources on how to respond to and prevent sexual assault on college and university campuses and in our schools. The website will help you to find a crisis service, learn more about your rights and how to file a complaint, and view a map of resolved school-level enforcement activities.

The First Report of the White House Task Force to Protect Students From Sexual Assault
On April 29, 2014, The White House Task Force To Protect Students From Sexual Assault issued its a report titled “The First Report of the White House Task Force to Protect Students From Sexual Assault”. The report recommended four action steps for institutions:

    1. Identify the scope of the problem on college campuses;
    2. Help prevent campus sexual assault;
    3. Help schools respond effectively when a student is assaulted; and
    4. Improve, and make more transparent, the federal government’s enforcement efforts.

The Report includes policy recommendations and resources to help institutions with next steps.

Simultaneous to the Task Force Report, The United States Department of Education Office for Civil Rights issued a 52-point guidance document to further clarify the obligations imposed by the April 2011 Dear Colleague Letter and OCR’s 2001 guidance. The OCR guidance document, titled “OCR Questions and Answers on Title IX and Sexual Violence.” Some topics covered in the document include procedural requirements, reporting, confidentiality, investigations, and trainings.

Articles

Risk Management Considerations Regarding the Clery Act, Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) and Title IX When Students Study Abroad, University Risk Management and Insurance Association, Government and Regulatory Affairs, January 2016.


Contact

For information on filing a Title IX complaint at SUNY System Administration, contact

Tracy Reimann
Director of Human Resources, SUNY System Title IX Coordinator
518-320-1519
Email

 

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The information contained on the SUNY Compliance website is for general campus guidance only and is not intended, nor can be relied upon, as legal advice or the imposition on SUNY campuses of specific policies or requirements. The site is intended to be an informational-only clearinghouse for some of the laws, rules, and regulations that may impact the State University of New York’s campuses. Additionally, given the rapid, changing nature of laws, rules and regulations, there may be delays or omissions contained on this site which therefore cannot be relied upon as complete. For complete compliance information, consult your campus compliance officials. For legal advice, consult your lawyer.

Compliance