In honor of Women’s history month, Diane Rosenfeld, one of the country’s leading experts on Title IX, offers her insights on why the law has been so integral to cases of campus sexual assault. In Rosenfeld developed the nation’s first and still only seminar on Title IX and sexual assault. She is the director of the Gender Violence Program at Harvard Law School, has done extensive case work in the field and is training the next generation of attorneys to fight for survivors of campus sexual assault.
Russlynn Ali, Assistant Secretary Ali for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education, credits the white paper put forth by Rosenfeld and her students as contributing to the Department’s release of the Vice President Joe Biden’s groundbreaking Dear Colleague Guidance on Title IX and student-on-student sexual assault. She also currently advises the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault.
For many survivors, Title IX has been the best (and often the only) recourse for seeking justice. In the video below, Rosenfeld explains what Title IX is and how important it has been to hold schools accountable and encourage reform.
The most effective way to stop campus sexual assault, explains Rosenfeld, is to confront the reality of its perpetration, identify the cultural components that enable its normalization and build the institutional capacity of schools to prevent and address it. Read more from her commentary, Uncomfortable Conversations: Confronting the Reality of Target Rape on Campus, to see how schools must respond to this ongoing crisis.