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ASU placed on list of institutions under Title IX investigations


Students walk down Palm Walk on the Tempe campus. (Photo by Serwaa Adu-Tutu) Students walk down Palm Walk on the Tempe campus. (Photo by Serwaa Adu-Tutu)

The U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights placed ASU on a list of higher education institutions under investigation for possible violations of federal law over the handling of sexual violence and harassment complaints, according to a Thursday press release.

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in all education programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance, according to the release.

The list released today is the first comprehensive look at which campuses are under review by OCR for possible violations of the law's requirements around sexual violence, according to the release.

Catherine Lhamon, assistant secretary for civil rights, said, "We are making this list available in an effort to bring more transparency to our enforcement work and to foster better public awareness of civil rights."

Lhamon also said a college or university's appearance on the list and being the subject of a Title IX investigation in no way indicates that the college or university is in violation or has violated the law.

According to a statement released by the University, ASU takes all Title IX sexual misconduct complaints very seriously, thoroughly investigates them and, if violations are found, delivers swift and appropriate punishment.

When ASU was informed by OCR that it had received a complaint, the University promptly provided all relevant information to the agency, according to the release.

The OCR has approached ASU with the possibility of entering into a pre-investigation resolution, according to the University release.

USC and CU were the only other Pac-12 schools placed on the list.

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