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Letter to the Editor: Administration responds to anonymous Title IX letter

As Hofstra’s Title IX Officers who take our work as a mission and a promise to students, we feel obligated to respond to the inaccuracies and misleading statements made in a recent anonymous letter (Nov. 7, 2017) to the editor regarding our Title IX policies and resources.

Since Hofstra is dedicated to intellectual and personal growth, we take all Title IX complaints very seriously. Bringing complaints through our policies is the best way to make effective change in our campus, and we encourage students to report so they can receive support and assistance.

We hope the anonymous letter to the editor does not discourage students from making Title IX reports.

Hofstra’s Title IX policies are one of the many ways that the university commits to keeping students safe while providing an educational environment that allows them to succeed. Training is regularly provided to Hofstra students and employees on policies, resources and protocol for reporting a violation.

When the Title IX Officer for Student Issues is notified about a complaint a student has against another student, there is immediate outreach to offer the complainant the opportunity to discuss the “Student Policy Prohibiting Discriminatory Harassment, Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct,” as well as resources and interim measures and accommodations the student may need. These interim accommodations can include changes in course schedules, residence halls and extracurricular activities while an investigation into the complaint takes place.

Counseling assistance is also available through the Student Health and Counseling Center and/or the Safe Center LI (an off-campus non-profit located in Bethpage with an on-campus office) which provides individual and group counseling on campus for survivors of sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence and stalking.

As the Title IX Officer for Student Issues and the Title IX Officer for Employee Matters, we actively work toward providing resources that are available to all parties involved, while at the same time ensuring that students understand our policies.

Students can visit Hofstra.edu/TitleIX to view more about our policies and for additional resources. The Title IX Officer for Student Issues can be reached at StudentTitleIX@hofstra.edu or 516-463-5841. The Title IX Officer for Employee Matters can be reached at HumanResources@hofstra.edu or 516-463-6859.

In the final paragraph of his letter to the editor, the writer notes that Hofstra has a wonderful sense of community and implores the members of our community to get involved in these issues. We could not agree more. Hofstra students are, in fact, already very involved in keeping our campus safe in many ways – from groups like the It’s on Us Committee and to initiatives such as Take Back the Night.

We encourage all members of the campus community to attend or join these efforts, as well as those sponsored by It’s On Us, Title IX Office for Student Issues and Student Advocacy and Prevention Awareness. We encourage everyone, including the author of this anonymous letter, to reach out and discuss any concerns.

For ideas on how we may better communicate our policies reach out to StudentTitleIX@Hofstra.edu, and for resources or questions about programming please contact StudentAdvocacy@hofstra.edu.

With Pride,

Allison Vernace

Title IX Officer for Student Issues

Denise Cunningham

Title IX Officer for Employee Matters

The views and opinions expressed in the Editorial section are those of the authors of the articles. They are not an endorsement of the views of The Chronicle or its staff. The Chronicle does not discriminate based on the opinions of the authors.

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