Written by: Mirella Barrera-Betancourt
On Jan. 28, Western’s athletic teams celebrated the 50th anniversary of the long-standing federal civil rights law, Title IX.
For those unfamiliar with the law, Title IX of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits sex-based discrimination — including pregnancy, gender identity and sexual orientation — in educational institutions that receive federal funding. In 1972, Title IX was enacted as part of the revised Education Amendments, which acted to update the previous Civil Rights Act of 1964 which contains no mention of educational discrimination.
The opening of the Title IX text is as follows:
“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”
According to the National Collegiate Athletic Association, approximately 44% of student athlete opportunities go to women. This is a significant increase since pre-Title IX, a time where only 15% of college athletes were women.
The 50th anniversary celebration was held in conjunction with Western’s women’s basketball game against Saint Martin’s University.
As a reminder, Western holds its own policies and procedures regarding sexual harassment and sexual misconduct under the guidance of the Title IX team.
All students who witness or become subject to sexual misconduct or harassment are thereby required to report all information to the Title IX coordinator. Students can file a report related to sexual harassment and/or sexual misconduct with the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.