In a landmark settlement with San Jose State University (SJSU), the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California recently announced a $1.6 million agreement to resolve years of Title IX violations at the school. The violations included failure to properly respond to female athletes’ reports of sexual harassment and assault committed by an athletic trainer then working at SJSU. The department concluded that these transgressions occurred for over a decade, according to its investigation, and included instances where the SJSU retaliated against two employees, including terminating one employee who reported the athletic trainer’s misconduct and retaliating against another employee who expressed opposition to the reporting employee’s firing.
The press release announcing the settlement further disclosed that the University agreed to provide for improved processes for responding to sexual harassment reports, revisions to the policies and procedures within the school’s Sports Medicine and Athletics Training Program, additional resources allocated to the school’s Title IX office, and retaliation training for staff, among other relief. Under the agreement, SJSU will also pay $1.6 million in relief to 13 student athlete survivors who helped the investigation and who were sexually harassed by the perpetrator.
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