CA Title IX Coalition Releases Report for Legislative Hearing on Landmark Law

The California Title IX Coalition today is releasing recommendations (Results & Recommendations from Nine Local Assessments) to increase implementation of Title IX in school districts throughout the state.  Based on local assessments of high schools conducted by 9 community teams, as well as input of Title IX Coalition members, five recommendations will be presented at a state Senate Judiciary Committee informational hearing: Attaining Equal Opportunity for Girls in California’s Secondary Schools: How our Schools are Complying with Title IX.

The California Title IX Coalition is convened by CCRWF and includes AAUW-CA, Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center, Equal Rights Advocates, and California Women’s Law Center

The Top 5 Recommendations offer guidance to implement the federal law’s mandated requirements.

The Senate Judiciary hearing was organized at the direction of Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson, the chair of the committee and chair of the California Legislative Women’s Caucus.  Senator Jackson successfully authored SB 1349 in 2014. Beginning in the 2015-16 school year, this new law will require information on athletic participation, broken down by gender, to be posted on school district websites.

The California Title IX Coalition report makes 5 Top Recommendations:

Statewide Responsibility for Implementation of Title IX

1.     To provide local school districts the knowledge and tools to implement Title IX, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction and the California School Boards Association should collaborate to offer bi-annual trainings, model policies, templates for communications, and other best practices.

Local Responsibility for Implementation of Title IX

2.     The Superintendent in every school district throughout the state should ensure, prior to the start of each school year, that a Title IX Coordinator is identified and trained – and clarify if the Coordinator’s responsibilities are district-wide or if they will be working with Title IX Coordinators assigned in each school. Superintendents should require schools to prominently post on their websites contact information for their Title IX Coordinators and also provide contact information in bi-annual notices to administrators, teachers, staff, students and parents.

3.     Each local school board should hold an annual meeting to evaluate the status of Title IX implementation for their district, using the Title IX Compliance Check List or other systematic evaluation instrument. The focus of the local evaluations should be data-based and action-oriented, providing an opportunity for school board members to assess compliance and set objectives for implementation.  At minimum, the evaluation should focus on the Title IX Coordinator, athletics, sexual harassment, and pregnant and parenting teens.

4.     Superintendents and local school boards should ensure that schools offer optimal training of administrators, staff, and teachers, and that parents and teens are notified of the schools’ Title IX policies, practices and complaint procedures.

Responsibility for Oversight

5.     The California Legislative Women’s Caucus, in partnership with the Education and Judicial Committees in both the State Senate and State Assembly, should hold an annual oversight hearing to ensure that the California Superintendent of Public Instruction and local school districts are moving forward to implement Title IX.

The goal of the Coalition’s work is to bring a stronger focus on implementation and to provide school districts with the model policies, templates, tools, and trainings they need to successfully open up doors and opportunities for girls and young women throughout California.

For more information about the California Title IX Coalition, email karpilow@ccrwf.org.

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Just 36% of Voters Aware of State’s Paid Family Leave Program

CCRWF joined with the Work and Family Coalition to commission questions on a Field Poll on Paid Family Leave awareness in California.

Slightly more than one in three California registered voters (36%) reports being aware of the state’s Paid Family Leave Program, that provides up to six weeks of paid family leave for eligible workers. This proportion is down from 43% who said this in a similar Field Poll completed in June 2011.

While awareness of the program declined across nearly all major voter subgroups, particularly large declines were observed among ethnic voters, voters with no more than a high school education, and women.

For complete findings, go to http://www.field.com/fieldpollonline/subscribers/Rls2494.pdf

The poll questions were funded by contributions from Next Generation, CCRWF, Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center, Equal Rights Advocates, and AARP-CA.

 

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Register Now for the 2015 Women’s Policy Summit

Register now for the for 2015 Women’s Policy Summit: Advancing Women’s Health, Wealth & Power, to be held on Wednesday, January 14, at the Sacramento Convention Center.

Click here for direct links to:
Register for the 2015 Women’s Policy Summit.
Download the agenda for the 2015 Women’s Policy Summit (which includes a mail- or fax-in registration form).

Click here to apply for a Summit scholarship.

Click here for information about Pathways to Policy (P2P).

What is the Women’s Policy Summit?

The Women’s Policy Summit is a major policy forum held in California’s Capital to help launch the legislative session with proposals to advance the health, wealth and power of women and girls in all of their diverse communities.

Highlights from the 2015 Summit
The 2015 Women’s Policy Summit will be long on vision, action proposals and some of the best networking opportunities in the state with people who want to get things done!

Plenaries for 2015 include: Women, Poverty, and Economic Empowerment; Women, Working Families and the Workplace; Women’s and Girls’ Health; and Preventing Violence Against Women and Girls.

At the 2015 Women’s Policy Summit, we’ll also be working with partners in the Work and Family Coalition to launch a Paid Family Leave Awareness Campaign. And California’s Office of Health Equity will release a new Chart Book of statistics on women’s and girls’ health, rich with data from all of our state’s diverse communities.

Speaker Toni G. Atkins is Summit Keynote
We are proud to announce that our luncheon keynote speaker is recently elected Speaker of the Assembly Toni G. Atkins.
You won’t want to miss her speech: Keeping the California Dream Alive for Women and Working Families.

Register now!

The Women’s Policy Summit is co-sponsored by the California Legislative Women’s Caucus; the Latino, Black, API, and LGBT Legislative Caucuses; and the California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls — along with more than 60 nonprofit organizations.

Special thanks to The California Wellness Foundation, Kaiser Permanente, and The California Endowment for their support of the 2015 Women’s Policy Summit.

Scholarships
A limited number of scholarships are available for the 2015 Women’s Policy Summit. Please click here to complete the application for a Summit scholarship.

Registration for Legislative Members and Staff

Members of the Legislature can support our work by registering at www.ccrwf.org – or receive a complimentary ticket by registering at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/MemberRegistrationOnly-WPS2015

Legislative Staff can receive complimentary registration for the Summit General Sessions by registering at:
https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/LegStaffRegistrationforWPS

To attend the Summit Luncheon, legislative staff will need to purchase a ticket or apply for a scholarship.   Click here to register for the 2015 Women’s Policy Summit Luncheon.   Click here to apply for a Summit scholarship.

For Additional Information
Questions? Please contact danner@ccrwf.org.

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Waiting…and hoping Governor Brown will sign AB 1517

A broad coalition of public safety and women’s organizations is waiting to see if Governor Jerry Brown will sign AB 1517, ground-breaking legislation that would establish timelines for law enforcement to forward rape kits to labs and for labs to process rape kits and enter DNA profile information into the Combined DNA Index System, known as CODIS.

This legislation received unanimous, bi-partisan support on the floors of both the State Assembly and State Senate.

Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner, author of AB 1517, authored this op-ed piece in the Contra Costa Times, published on Saturday, September 20:

Gov. Jerry Brown can put California at the national forefront of efforts to prioritize testing sexual assault evidence, getting DNA from so-called “rape kits” into a national database rather than languishing in law enforcement evidence rooms.

When a survivor of sexual assault agrees to undergo a forensic exam, his or her body is the crime scene. It is painstakingly examined in a process that can take six hours or more and results in collection of evidence that is commonly referred to as a “rape kit.”

Although any survivor would reasonably expect a rape kit to be analyzed and the DNA extracted for timely entry into the CODIS national database, reality has proved disappointing: 17,000 untested kits discovered by New York City; 12,000 in Los Angeles County; thousands more in Detroit, Houston, New Orleans, and Memphis.  Read more.

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Action Alert: Encourage Governor Brown to Sign SB 1349!

You can make a difference by showing your support — and it will take just a minute or two.

Click here to send an email directly to Governor Brown.

Or you can call the Governor’s Office at 916-445-2841 to voice your support.

Here’s the message we sent in by email:

Title IX has been the law of the land for over 40 years — but laws on the books do not guarantee implementation.

SB 1349, authored by Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson and supported by the California Title IX Coalition, would take a simple yet profound step to require schools to post on their websites information on athletic participation, broken down by gender.

Schools are already required to collect this information — and making it visible and accessible to parents, students and members of the community will help build awareness for the need, in many cases, to step-up implementation efforts.

It’s the year 2014 — and parents and educators want to ensure equitable resources and opportunities for their daughters.

SB 1349 is a practical and almost no-cost means to empower local leaders to meet their legal responsibilities to implement Title IX.

Ask the Governor to support SB 1349 by clicking here.

Interested in additional information?

Check out the letters and links available through two of our CA Title IX Coalition partners.

AAUW California
Offers a zip-code based draft letter to send by email.

Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center
Includes bill info., sample letter, and Gov. Brown contact information.

SB 1349 is supported by the California Title IX Coalition, convened by CCRWF.

AAUW of California
California Center for Research on Women and Families
California Women’s Law Center
Equal Rights Advocates
Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center

Act now to support SB 1349!

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Major Momentum in Legislature to Reduce Backlog of Untested Rape Kits

Before the close of the legislative session on August 31, the fate of many bills will be decided, including several high-profile bills showcased at the 2014 Women’s Policy Summit.

Here is the first of several Summit updates.

AB 1517 Would Reduce Backlog of Untested Rape Kits
January’s Summit featured high-powered panelists who profiled legislation (AB 1517) to reduce the backlog of untested rape kits. Authored by Assembly Member Nancy Skinner, this bill passed the Assembly with bipartisan support and will  be heard next on August 4 in the Senate Appropriations Committee.

AB 1517 is sponsored by the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault (CALCASA),  Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley, and Natasha’s Justice Project — all presenters at the Summit along with Assembly Member Skinner.

AB 1517 amends the Sexual Assault Victim’s Bill of Rights to provide specific timelines for law enforcement to forward rape kits to labs and for labs to process rape kits and enter DNA profile information into the Combined DNA Index System, known as CODIS.  AB 1517 also requires a law enforcement agency to notify a rape victim when a rape kit has not been tested and the statute of limitations (the time period for filing criminal charges in the case) is about to expire.

Across the nation, local and state jurisdictions are moving to reduce their backlogs of untested rape kits, often finding DNA matches which help bring perpetrators to justice.

Interested in additional background on this critical issue?  Check out an article by Susan Rose, former member of the Santa Barbara Board of Supervisors and active with Human Rights Watch.

Also be sure to check back here at the CCRWF website for future updates.

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