We are gravely disappointed with the Department of Education’s final Title IX rule released earlier today. The new rule will roll back protections for survivors of sexual misconduct on school campuses and creates a less safe school environment for millions of students.
The final regulation narrows the definition of sexual harassment, limits the cases schools are obligated to investigate, and requires live hearings of survivors and perpetrators to assess credibility through cross-examination. These policies will have a damaging impact not only those survivors who do choose to come forward, but they will also silence those who feel their justice will be denied. It is unconscionable that during a pandemic where women are disproportionately affected by health and economic fallout, and millions of students are making critical decision about their ability to continue pursuing their education journeys, Secretary Betsy DeVos has chosen this time to release a rule which makes it more difficult for survivors of campus sexual harassment, abuse, and assault to seek recourse and protection.
As an organization committed to the advancement and empowerment of all women and girls, safety and security is the cornerstone from which all other progress can be made. AnitaB.org will continue to support all survivors of sexual misconduct and vocally condemn attempts to weaken the fight against sex- and gender-based violence, wherever they may take place.