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University of Minnesota Twin Cities Title IX Defense Lawyers

Title IX is a federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any educational program or activity that receives federal funding. This includes most schools, including the University of Minnesota Twin Cities.The law covers sexual harassment, sexual assault, stalking, domestic violence, and other forms of gender-based discrimination and misconduct. It applies to students, faculty, staff, and visitors to campus.If you or someone you know has experienced sexual misconduct at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities, it‘s important to know your rights and options under Title IX. Here‘s what you need to know:

What is Title IX?

Title IX is a federal civil rights law that was passed as part of the Education Amendments of 1972. The law 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.”In other words, Title IX prohibits sex discrimination in education. This includes sexual harassment, sexual assault, and other forms of sexual misconduct.

How does Title IX apply to the University of Minnesota Twin Cities?

As a recipient of federal funding, the University of Minnesota Twin Cities is required to comply with Title IX. This means the university must:

  • Respond promptly and effectively to sexual misconduct
  • Provide interim measures as necessary
  • Conduct adequate, reliable, and impartial investigations
  • Take steps to prevent recurrence of sexual misconduct and correct its discriminatory effects

The university has a Title IX Coordinator who oversees compliance with the law. The coordinator‘s responsibilities include receiving reports of sexual misconduct, coordinating investigations, and ensuring that the university provides appropriate resources and support to students.

What constitutes sexual misconduct under Title IX?

Sexual misconduct includes any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature. This can include:

  • Sexual assault, including rape, fondling, incest, and statutory rape
  • Dating violence
  • Domestic violence
  • Stalking
  • Sexual harassment, which can include unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature
  • Sexual exploitation, which can include non-consensual sharing of intimate images, prostituting another person, or knowingly transmitting STIs

What should I do if I experience sexual misconduct?

If you have experienced sexual misconduct, it’s important to know that it is not your fault and you have options. Here are some steps you can take:

  1. Get to a safe place. If you are in immediate danger, call 911.
  2. Seek medical attention. You can receive medical care and evidence collection at a local hospital emergency room. In Minnesota, you have the right to a sexual assault forensic exam free of charge and without having to report to law enforcement.
  3. Consider reporting the incident. You have the option to report sexual misconduct to the university, to law enforcement, or to both. You can also choose not to report.
  • To report to the university, contact the Title IX Coordinator or submit an online report.
  • To report to law enforcement, contact the University of Minnesota Police Department or your local police department.
  1. Seek support. There are many resources available to support survivors of sexual misconduct, both on and off campus. These include counseling services, victim advocacy, and legal assistance.
  • On campus resources include the Aurora Center for Advocacy & Education and Boynton Mental Health Clinic.
  • Off campus resources include the Sexual Violence Center and Ramsey County SOS Sexual Violence Services.

What happens when I report sexual misconduct to the university?

When the university receives a report of sexual misconduct, the Title IX Coordinator will reach out to the person who experienced the misconduct (the complainant) to discuss their options and offer support and resources.If the complainant chooses to move forward with a formal complaint, the university will conduct an investigation. Both the complainant and the person accused of misconduct (the respondent) will have the opportunity to provide information and evidence.The university uses a “preponderance of the evidence” standard in Title IX investigations. This means that if the evidence shows it is more likely than not that sexual misconduct occurred, the respondent will be found responsible.If the respondent is found responsible, the university will impose appropriate sanctions, which can range from a warning to expulsion or termination of employment. The complainant and respondent both have the right to appeal the decision.

What are my rights under Title IX?

As a student at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities, you have the right to an education free from sexual misconduct. You also have the right to:

  • Report sexual misconduct to the university and/or to law enforcement
  • Get help from the university to ensure your safety and access to educational programs and activities
  • Be notified of counseling and other support services
  • Request academic accommodations and other interim measures
  • Have your complaint handled in accordance with university policy
  • Be informed of the outcome of any disciplinary proceeding
  • Appeal the outcome of a Title IX investigation

What if I’m accused of sexual misconduct?

If you are accused of sexual misconduct, it’s important to take the accusation seriously and seek help. You have the right to:

  • Receive notice of the allegations against you
  • Have the university conduct a fair, impartial investigation
  • Be presumed not responsible unless and until proven otherwise
  • Have an advisor of your choice present at any meetings or proceedings
  • Review and respond to evidence
  • Appeal the outcome of a Title IX investigation

It’s important to remember that the university‘s Title IX process is separate from any criminal proceedings. You may want to seek legal advice to understand your rights and options.

What resources are available on campus?

The University of Minnesota Twin Cities offers a variety of resources for students impacted by sexual misconduct:

  • The Aurora Center: Provides free and confidential support services to victims/survivors/concerned people of sexual assault, relationship violence, or stalking. Services include 24/7 helpline, advocacy, counseling, and more.
  • Boynton Mental Health Clinic: Provides mental health services to students, including individual and group counseling.
  • Student Counseling Services: Offers mental health and academic counseling to students.
  • University of Minnesota Police Department: Responsible for law enforcement and public safety on campus. Takes reports of sexual misconduct and conducts criminal investigations.
  • Title IX Office: Oversees the university’s response to reports of sexual misconduct and ensures compliance with Title IX.

What about off campus resources?

There are also many resources available off campus for victims/survivors of sexual misconduct in the Twin Cities area:

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I was drinking when the sexual misconduct occurred?

It’s important to remember that drinking does not excuse sexual misconduct and does not mean that you consented. The university‘s Title IX policy prohibits sexual misconduct regardless of whether alcohol or drugs were involved.

Can I report sexual misconduct if it happened off campus?

Yes. The university’s Title IX policy applies to conduct that occurs on campus as well as off campus conduct that has a substantial impact on a student‘s education or the university community.

What if I’m not sure if what happened was sexual misconduct?

If you are unsure whether what you experienced constitutes sexual misconduct, you can still seek help and support. You can contact a confidential resource like the Aurora Center to discuss your experience and explore your options.

Will my parents find out if I report sexual misconduct to the university?

The university generally cannot share information about a Title IX report with a student’s parents without the student‘s consent. However, there are some exceptions, such as if there is a health or safety emergency.

What if I don’t want an investigation?

If you report sexual misconduct to the university, you can choose whether to pursue a formal Title IX investigation. The university will provide support and resources regardless of whether you choose to move forward with an investigation.

How long does a Title IX investigation take?

The length of a Title IX investigation can vary depending on the complexity of the case. The university strives to complete investigations within 60 days, but some cases may take longer.

What if I experience retaliation for reporting sexual misconduct?

Title IX prohibits retaliation against anyone who reports sexual misconduct or participates in a Title IX investigation. If you experience retaliation, you can report it to the Title IX Coordinator or the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action.

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