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The voices of survivors, member programs, and community allies, joining together in one voice, are essential in order to affect social change to end violence and oppression in our society. Every voice is important.

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Read our latest newsletter: February 2017.

What's Happening

"Educating our communities and elected officials about the needs of survivors in our local cities and towns requires year round focus. JDI is our pathway to informing and influencing the state and national agenda to end sexual and domestic violence." ~ Karen Cavanaugh, Executive Director of Womanshelter/Companeras. PICTURE: Staff from The Center for Hope & Healing with Attorney General Maura Healey at JDI Advocacy Day.

Keep your hands of Title IX

On November 16, the Department of Education issued a new proposed rule that would significantly impact protections for survivors of sexual violence in their schools. The proposed rule was published on the Federal Register on November 29, 2018, beginning the 60-day clock for public comments to be submitted.

Comments must be submitted on or before January 28, 2019.  Please write today and let Secretary Betsy DeVos know that you oppose these changes and the undermining of survivor safety on campuses.

This list, adapted from Know Your IX, Things to Know About Betsy DeVos' Proposed Title IX Rule. highlights the key changes including:

  • Requiring schools to only investigate the most extreme forms of harassment and assault by changing the definition of sexual harassment.
  • Narrowing the definition of sexual harassment to include only conduct within a school's program or activities--leaving out some assaults that happen off campus or while studying abroad.
  • Allowing schools to adopt a "clear and convincing" standard for these cases even if the school uses a lower standard in other serious misconduct cases.
  • Allowing schools to use mediation processes without clear guidance or regulations about how to ensure these processes are not harmful to survivors.
  • Requiring "live hearings" in all post-secondary education grievance cases and cross examination by parties' advisors. 
  • Not requiring religious institutions to certify religious exemptions prior to claiming such an exemption.
  • Allowing schools to delay hearing process in cases where law enforcement may be conducting an investigation and setting no outside timeframe for hearing processes.

You can find resources on the Title IX proposed rule, how to submit a comment during the public comment period, and other actions you can take:  Hands Off IX, a website of Know Your IX and End Rape On Campus. 

Also check out:  How to Talk About Title IX changes during the holiday season (Know Your IX).

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