Students have right of appeal
Under the federal Campus Sexual Assault Victims’ Bill of Rights and the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, victims of sexual assault have some legal guarantees as to how a report of a sexual crime must be handled by a college or university administrator and/or hearing process.
If these standards are not met, a person has the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education Office of Civil Rights, which also handles complaints in regard to Title IX, which bars sex discrimination (including assaults), and Title VI, which bars discrimination on the basis of race.
Under these two laws survivors of campus sexual assaults have the right to:
e_SBlt be made aware of their options to notify law enforcement
e_SBlt have the same opportunity to have others present at the hearing as the accused
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e_SBlt be notified of counseling services
e_SBlt and be notified of options for changing academic and living situations.
Schools found to have violated the bill of rights law can be fined up to $27,500 or lose their eligibility to participate in federal student aid programs, according to the Clery Center for Security on Campus, a Pennsylvania-based anti-campus violence agency.
To make a complaint, a person can call 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3242). Or file the complaint online at the department’s website.
The Clery Center offers assistance with filing federal Clery Act and bill of rights complaints. The agency can be contacted at 484-580-8754 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
— KRISTIN PALPINI