Christine de Pizan

Christine de Pizan
The Writer Christine de Pizan at Her Desk

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972

Title IX (signed into law 23 June 1972)

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was enacted to end discrimination based on religion, race, color, or national origin--although it prohibited sex discrimination in employment, it did not include any provisions to end discrimination on the basis of sex in education or in federally funded programs.

Thus the need for further legislation. Title IX, which was introduced into the Senate by Birch Bayh on 28 February 1972 and which was co-authored by Representative Patsy Mink, is simple and straightforward: 
No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.
An "overview" of the statute is provided at the Department of Justice website:
Title IX is a comprehensive federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded education program or activity. The principal objective of Title IX is to avoid the use of federal money to support sex discrimination in education programs and to provide individual citizens effective protection against those practices. Title IX applies, with a few specific exceptions, to all aspects of federally funded education programs or activities. In addition to traditional educational institutions such as colleges, universities, and elementary and secondary schools, Title IX also applies to any education or training program operated by a recipient of federal financial assistance.
Title IX was signed into law by Richard Nixon. After Mink's death in 2002, the U.S. Congress renamed the Title IX Amendment, which is now known officially as the "Patsy T. Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act."

There are multiple controversies surrounding Title IX--and a surprising amount of opposition to it--particularly in light of the "damage" that Title IX does to men's athletics and the way Title IX can be used in campus sexual assault cases. I wish I found that hard to believe. So, it's important to:

Update, 23 June 2022: The New York Times has published an "op-doc" feature today on Patsy Mink and Title IX; to see Ben Proudfoot's "Mink!" you can click here. (The documentary begins with narration by Mink's daughter, who notes that her mother was the "first woman of color elected to Congress.") It's a great short documentary--an enlightening view of this incredible woman.

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