Students Call Out Colleges on Title IX Rights + Rally Support Online

Reported by MTV Act.

Photo: (Thomas Patterson for The New York Times)

Photo: (Thomas Patterson for The New York Times)

Title IX of the Education Amendments prohibited sex-based discrimination in schools, but it also guarantees students “essential and extensive rights to freedom from sexual violence necessary for equal access to education.” Do you know your IX rights?

Know Your IX is a new campaign spearheaded by a group of sexual assault activists located all over the country. You might not know their names, but you’ve probably heard their stories. Alexandra Brodsky helped bring a Title IX complaint against Yale, while Dana Bolger helped found It Happens Here, a blog recounting sexual assaults on Amherst’s campus. Their experiences might be different, but one thing Brodsky, Bolger, Annie Clark, Courtney Kiehl, Kate Orazem, Andrea Pino, Ali Safran and Lauren Buxbaum have in common, is that they’re determined to educate students about their Title IX rights. They formed an underground network of sorts, sharing their stories with each other, and now want to make sure all students across the country know what rights are afforded them.

They recently launched their campaign on crowd funding platform Indiegogo, in hopes of raising $10,000 by May 27th. The campaign came about because, as the site notes, “many colleges today are failing to fulfill their legal and ethical obligations.” They’re hoping to educate every college student in the country about his or her rights under Title IX before the start of the fall 2013 term. They believe that, “armed with information, survivors will be able to advocate for themselves during their schools’ grievance proceedings, and, if Title IX guarantees are not respected, to file a complaint against their colleges with the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.”

You can donate any amount big or small to the campaign, although some amounts come with “perks” like a magnet or bumper sticker. Even if you can’t afford to donate right now, you can still spread the word to make sure students are aware of their rights under Title IX.

The end of April marks the end of Sexual Assault Awareness Month, but we will continue to shine a light on the efforts of those who are speaking out on behalf of survivors. For more information on how you can help sexual assault survivors, take action below.

If you or someone you know need someone to talk to, the National Sexual Assault Hotline is free, confidential and available 24/7 at 1.800.656.HOPE. If you don’t feel comfortable speaking to someone over the phone, you can log on to the National Sexual Assault Online Hotline.

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