In order to give rise to a complaint under Title IX, sexual harassment must be sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it adversely affects a student’s education or creates a hostile or abusive educational environment.
After a yearlong effort to bring its Title IX policies into compliance at a cost of about $1 million, Virginia Commonwealth University is again under federal scrutiny for how it addresses sexual violence and harassment. VCU has been added to the list of 131 higher-education institutions, including five others in Virginia, that are under investigation by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights. Sexual harassment of students can be a form of discrimination prohibited by Title IX. The Office for Civil Rights has long recognized that sexual harassment of students engaged in by school employees, other students, or third parties is covered by Title IX. Individuals who are sexually harassed should contact a Virginia sexual harassment attorney to discuss mechanisms to remedy the harms.
Sexual harassment claims
Sexual harassment claims are only valid if the sexual behavior exhibited is unwelcome, and it can affect both men and women in the workplace, or educational setting, without relevance to positions held at the specific venue. Sexual harassment is illegal when it is so frequent, or severe that it creates a hostile or offensive environment, or when it results in an adverse decisions. The harasser can be the victim’s supervisor, instructor, a supervisor in another area, a co-worker, another student, a visitor to the business or university, such as a client or customer. Victims of sexual harassment should talk to Richmond sexual harassment lawyers about available legal actions toward damage compensation.
Identify sexual harassment
In order to give rise to a complaint under Title IX, sexual harassment must be sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it adversely affects a student’s education or creates a hostile or abusive educational environment. For a one-time incident to rise to the level of harassment, it must be severe. Sexual harassment lawyers will explain the process that will be followed regarding a claim against the harasser and the methods of compensation specific to their losses.
Some examples of sexual harassment include:
- Pressure for a dating, romantic, or intimate relationship
- Unwelcome touching, kissing, hugging, or massaging
- Pressure for sexual activity
- Unnecessary references to parts of the body
- Sexual innuendos or sexual humor
- Obscene gestures
- Sexual graffiti, pictures, or posters
- Sexually explicit profanity
- Asking about, or telling about, sexual fantasies
- E-mail and Internet use that violates this policy
- Sexual violence/assault
Victims of sexual harassment have legal options toward damage compensation and skilled lawyers can assist them after the abuse has been reported through the proper channels at a place of employment, a school, or wherever the incident took place; if there are procedural guidelines set up that must be followed.