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Department of Education's Action on Title IX

Friday, Sept. 22, 2017

Dear VCU and VCU Health Community, 

In light of the U.S. Department of Education’s decision to rescind certain guidelines related to investigating sexual assault cases, Virginia Commonwealth University maintains its inexorable commitment to the safety, security and success of all of our people.

We have a legal obligation to address sexual harassment and assault, codified by Title IX legislation, regulatory guidance, court cases and state laws. The Department of Education’s rescission does not change our legal responsibilities. VCU will continue to enforce its Sexual Misconduct/Violence and Sex/Gender Discrimination Policy and carry out its responsibilities to prevent and address discrimination in all forms in our university community. 

We also have a moral obligation, and our commitment will continue to exceed compliance as we strive to be a national example for success, equity and trust. We will continue to require Title IX training for all faculty, staff and students. We will continue to implement clear and equitable policies and grievance procedures. 

In recent years, we have fortified our Equity and Access Services—including with resources reallocated from the President’s Office—and we will not roll back our support for any member of our community affected by sexual violence. As always, we will have no tolerance for sexual violence nor for the forfeiture of due process in any case. 

We will continue to monitor and assess future developments related to Title IX. Though some federal guidelines may change, our commitment will not:  Virginia Commonwealth University will be a place of inclusion, trust and abiding efforts to address and prevent campus sexual violence and ensure compliance with Title IX. More information on our Title IX commitment is available here

Together, we will continue to enhance our culture of trust and work to eliminate all forms of sexual violence on our campuses. 

Sincerely, 

Michael Rao

President, VCU and VCU Health