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Lozano Smith Title IX Toolkit

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LozanoSmith.com Title IX Complaints 3 Step 3. Establish Timelines and Initiate an Investigation* 1. Notify the complainant of the policy the LEA will be following to process his/her complaint, as well as the timeline for completing the investigation. 2. Notify the accused that a complaint has been filed against him/her along with additional information, as appropriate.** 3. Update the timeline, as needed, and keep the complainant appraised of any delays or extensions. 4. Document any delays in the investigation. 5. Keep the Title IX Coordinator updated on the timelines and any delays. Step 4. Interview the Complainant 1. Interview the complainant first. > Carefully determine who should interview the complainant. You may wish to consider the complainants' age, gender and existing comfort level with potential interviewees. > Obtain all facts regarding the incident. > Allow the complainant to narrate without interruption; follow up with clarifying open-ended questions. This strategy may need to be modified depending upon the complainant's age and willingness to cooperate. > Preserve evidence and documentation provided by witnesses. This may include emails, screen shots, pictures, or physical evidence. > Ask for the names of other potential witnesses. > Consider allowing the complainant to have an advisor or support person present. > Maintain neutrality. > Be compassionate and sensitive. 2. Depending on the circumstances you may want to request a written statement. If so, make sure it is signed and dated. 3. Remind the complainant that the LEA prohibits retaliation and what to do if he/she feels retaliated against. 4. Do not promise confidentiality. Step 5. Interview Other Witnesses 1. Witnesses should not be interviewed together. 2. Obtain all facts regarding the incident. > Ask broad, open-ended questions to narrow questions. > Ask for the names of other potential witnesses. 3. Preserve evidence and documentation provided by witnesses. This may include emails, screen shots, pictures, or physical evidence. 4. Depending on the circumstances you may want to request a written statement. If so, make sure it is signed and dated. * An LEA may use its disciplinary procedures in lieu of its sex-based discrimination or sexual harassment complaint procedures, so long as the disciplinary procedures meet the requirements of Title IX. Should the LEA choose to follow its disciplinary proce- dures, the complainant should still receive the interim measures and notices detailed herein. ** The Questions and Answers, dated September 22, 2017 outline detailed information that should be provided to the accused. However, providing this information may conflict with an LEAs obligation to respect a complainant's request for confidentiality. Legal counsel should be consulted in cases where confidentiality is a concern.

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