Amicus Briefs

On Dec. 8, 2020, NWLC joined an amicus brief led by the ACLU Foundation on behalf of civil rights groups in the case Radwan v. University of Connecticut Board of Trustees. The groups asked the 2nd Circuit to reverse the district court’s decision, which held that there was no genuine issue of fact about whether the university’s treatment of a female athlete constituted sex discrimination under Title IX. The female athlete was thrown off her team and lost her scholarship for raising her middle finger in a celebratory gesture after her team’s win in a tournament championship, whereas male athletes at UConn have engaged in worse conduct, including criminal conduct, with virtually no disciplinary consequences. The brief urges the court to overturn the district court’s rigid requirement that a Title IX plaintiff challenging the imposition of discipline must provide evidence of a specific male comparator, disciplined for virtually the same conduct, by the same decisionmaker. Such a rule would undermine Title IX protections in athletics, where male and female athletes typically have different coaches, and more broadly, it could create perverse incentives for schools to insulate themselves from Title IX liability by separating the supervision of female and male students.

Published On: December 9, 2020Associated Issues: AthleticsEducation & Title IX
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