Bennet Urges DeVos to Reverse Decision Revoking Title IX Guidance

Washington, D.C. - Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet, along with a group of Democratic senators, sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos criticizing her decision to revoke guidance that directs schools on how to handle investigations of sexual assault and urging her to reverse course.

The senators outlined how Secretary DeVos' decision has undermined the rights of sexual assault survivors and created chaos and confusion for schools.

"Your action on Friday shows a clear lack of concern for the many requests of survivors of sexual assault and members of Congress who have asked you to leave the previous guidance in place," the senators wrote. "Your new guidance is already creating uncertainty and chaos for schools and we ask that you immediately reinstate the previous guidance."

Last Friday, DeVos rescinded Obama-era Title IX guidance and issued new and confusing interim guidance. While she indicated she would start a new rule-making process, she provided no timeline. Advocates have warned this interim guidance could result in fewer survivors coming forward and may allow the campus sexual assault epidemic to be swept under the rug. Secretary DeVos has made a number of troubling decisions surrounding student safety and civil rights, including appointing Candice Jackson as Acting Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights after she made an insensitive remark on sexual assault and advising the Office for Civil Rights to scale back systematic investigations that help combat the epidemic of campus sexual assault.

Bennet has been a strong advocate for addressing mishandlings of sexual assault, including reducing the national rape kit backlog and improving health care services for sexual assault survivors.

Click HERE for a copy of the letter.