California doubles down on status quo

Monday, September 7, 2020
 | 
Bob Kellogg (OneNewsNow.com)

gavel with U.S. flagThe Golden State is having none of the U.S. Department of Education's new Title IX rules that upgrade due process procedures for college students accused of campus sexual assault.

State lawmakers, just before the end of their session, passed SB 493. The bill was introduced in 2019 and had already passed the state Senate. It includes many provisions that are at odds with due process and may also conflict with the U.S. Department of Education's new Title IX rules, which took effect on August 14. 

Foundation for Individual Rights in Education attorney Tyler Coward says liberal legislators apparently prefer the much-criticized process.

"Instead of updating California state law to be in compliance with the new Title IX regulations issued by the federal government, the bill sort of does double down on lack of procedural protections that have been criticized by people all across the country," Coward reports.

The federal Title IX rules require a live hearing whenever either party requests a hearing and states that "decision-maker(s) must permit each party's advisor to ask the other party and any witnesses all relevant questions and follow-up questions, including those challenging credibility."

Coward

In contrast, SB 493 prevents either party from access to all of the evidence. Direct examination is also not permitted.

"It's already California state law that requires any questioning through cross-examination to be asked through the human chairperson," explains Coward.

He goes on to warn that the California higher education system is risking the loss of federal funds by passing the bill.

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