Published Case Will Protect Student Survivors of Sexual Assault

August 12. 2019
Jess Eagle


In a move that will help student survivors of sexual assault across the country, today a California appellate court granted ERA’s request to publish an important case ensuring the rights of student survivors in Title IX proceedings.

The Court of Appeal for the 2nd Appellate District has published Doe v. Occidental College, a recent case which confirms that the rights of survivors are just as important as the rights of respondents in Title IX sexual misconduct proceedings. This will help ensure that survivors are protected from re-traumatization during Title IX hearings, such as being directly cross-examined by the respondent or their attorney.

"Victim-blaming and not being believed are some of the worst things survivors face in these cases, and this decision ensures that once a hearing officer determines a survivor to be credible, that survivor’s credibility will not be questioned again. This is essential to ensuring victims are not re-traumatized by a process meant to protect them, not cause them further harm. With recent decisions swinging the pendulum of justice in the direction of further victimization, this decision gives survivors hope."

— Senior Attorney Brenda Adams, who led the effort for publication of the case

The case also says courts cannot reassess the credibility of survivors and their witnesses after they were determined to be credible by the hearing officer.

Publication is crucial, because it means the case can now be cited by lawyers across the country who are representing student survivors and fighting for their rights. Lawyers cannot cite cases that are unpublished.

Read our letter requesting publication to learn more about the importance of this case.

Stay Connected & Take Action

Continue to EqualRights.org

Support gender justice

You helped us get this far, but we need your continued support more than ever for the year ahead. Please help us reach our 2019 fundraising goal!

Give

Legal Advice & Resources / Consejos y Recursos legales

Know Your Rights

Learn what your rights are so you can navigate your situation and make the best decision for you.

Your Rights at Work
Your Rights at School

Contact Us

Due to our current caseload, we are unfortunately not able to offer appointments for employment-related issues right now. Please see our Know Your Rights guides for information about your rights at work.

For issues at school, temporarily we can only help with:
- Sexual harassment or sexual assault in higher education
- Gender-based harassment or discrimination (including sexual harassment or assault) of LGBTQI+ individuals at all grade levels

Tell us about your situation

Learn More

We have trained legal advocates and lawyers on staff to guide you through your legal issue.

Note: Due to limited capacity, our staff can currently only assist new clients with select issues at school or related to education. We hope to re-open our employment-related intakes soon.

Conozca Sus Derechos

Aprende sus derechos para que puedas navegar su situación y tomar la mejor decisión para ti.

Sus Derechos en el Trabajo

Contáctenos

Por el volumen de nuestros casos, desafortunadamente no podemos ofrecer citas nuevas por cualquier problema relacionada a empleo en este momento. Favor de leer nuestro Guia de Conocer Sus Derechos para información sobre sus derechos en el trabajo.

Para problemas a su escuela, temporalmente, solo podemos ayudar con:
- Acoso sexual o agresión sexual en la universidad
- Acoso o discriminación basado en el género (incluyendo acoso sexual o agresión sexual) de personas que son LGBTQI+ de cualquier nivel de grado

EXPLIQUENOS SOBRE SU SITUACION

Nuestro servicio de asesoramiento por teléfono está cerrado por ahora

En este momento, no estamos recibiendo solicitudes dejadas por un recado de teléfono. Sin embargo, usted puede someter una solicitud para una consulta por la manera de hacer clic en el link "Explíquenos Sobre Su Situacion."

Aprender Mas
Tenemos defensores legales y abogados capacitados para guiarle por su problema legal. Nota: Por nuestra capacidad limitada, nuestros empleados solo pueden ayudar a los clientes nuevos que tienen problems specificas relaciada a la escuela. Esperamos que podemos abrir de nuevo las citas de empleo muy pronto.