Dating violence in college
The Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013, which amended the Violence Against Women Act (often referred to as VAWA), included amendments to the Clery act, particularly regarding how institutions of higher education address the crimes of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking and the rights and resources provided to survivors of these crimes.Daytona State College is committed to providing a place of learning and work that is free of violence, including all forms of violence, harassment, intimidation or exploitation.Since then, campus activists have joined together across the country to spread awareness, prompting bipartisan legislation, a White House task force committee, and federal investigations into more than 100 schools nationwide.But few people know that Title IX also protects students from domestic violence, which includes physical and psychological harm.Some studies show that the oft-reported statistic that one in five women is sexually assaulted during college also applies to domestic violence, often called “dating violence” or “intimate partner violence.” Around 20% of college students report having experienced dating violence by a current partner, and college-aged women (16–24) experience the highest rate of dating violence than any other age group, according to the Justice Department.Studies also show that dating violence disproportionately affects the long-term health of women of color.
Informal mediations are prohibited under federal gender equity law Title IX, as well as the University of Chicago’s own policies, even on a voluntary basis, "in matters involving allegations of sexual assault." But Ortiz didn't know that, and the dean who suggested the process didn’t tell her.Even so, “schools are totally lost on how to respond to violence when it occurs in the context of a dating relationship,” said Dana Bolger, co-founder of Know Your IX, an activist group that has lobbied for dating violence to be taken seriously on campuses.Activists have long felt frustrated that physical, emotional and psychological abuse is seen as secondary to sexual assault, unless a student is seriously injured or killed.The next wave of Title IX activism, researchers and activists say, will focus on how colleges investigate allegations of and provide resources to students in abusive relationships.And it’s going to be just as complicated and contentious.
Her complaint led to a still-ongoing federal Title IX investigation against the University of Chicago, but it also led to mental health issues that forced Ortiz to take a leave of absence, she said.