For Immediate Release
STATEMENT BY YWCA USA CEO Alejandra Y. Castillo
“Today’s Department of Education’s decision to rescind a Title IX guidance on sexual assault in schools truly fails victims of sexual violence. This interim guidance will place additional, undue burdens on survivors by changing the evidence standards of a case. While Secretary Betsy DeVos set out to create a fairer process for the accused, she is effectively tipping the scales even further in favor of assailants. By placing the burden of proof on the victim, this guidance ensures that fewer students will pursue justice and very few will receive it. In addition, her choice to continually refer to sexual assault as “sexual misconduct” undermines the experiences of survivors. Currently, one in five women and one in 16 men are sexually assaulted during college, but 90 percent of them do not report the crime. We must end gender-based violence, but to do that, we must empower survivors.”
About YWCA USA
YWCA USA is on a mission to eliminate racism, empower women, stand up for social justice, help families, and strengthen communities. We are one of the oldest and largest women’s organizations in the nation, serving over 2 million women, girls, and their families.
YWCA has been at the forefront of the most pressing social movements for more than 150 years — from voting rights to civil rights, from affordable housing to pay equity, from violence prevention to health care reform. Today, we combine programming and advocacy in order to generate institutional change in three key areas: racial justice and civil rights, empowerment and economic advancement of women and girls, and health and safety of women and girls.