The May 2 front-page article “College men use anti-bias law to fight sex-assault findings” was about more than the increase in young men claiming unfair treatment under Title IX. It also illustrated a lack of confidence in the higher-education system to properly punish sexual assault.
This distrust in the university system will continue unless we shift our approach to help universities properly enforce Title IX, which bars sex discrimination in federally funded schools. Faculty and Title IX officers are often unprepared to navigate complex cases, leaving victims of sexual assault, and those accused, overwhelmed and disappointed by ineffective investigations. This can be improved only with better guidance, protocols and training for Title IX officers, faculty, lawyers and staff by trained investigators experienced in this type of law.
Colleges’ and universities’ attitudes need to change, and meaningful protocols and training are the first step. Higher-education institutions will lose their funding and continue to damage their reputations if the system fails to serve all students.
Shan Wu, Washington
The writer is an attorney who focuses on student legal issues.