Title IX of the Education Amendments 1972 (20 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq.) and its implementing regulations, 34 C.F.R. Part 106, prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs or activities operated by recipients of Federal financial assistance. Sexual harassment of any student or employee, which includes acts of sexual violence, is a form of sex discrimination prohibited by Title IX.
Who is Covered by Title IX?
Educational institutions that receive federal financial assistance are covered by Title IX. If only one of the institution’s programs or activities receives federal funding, all of the programs within the institution must comply with Title IX regulations. In compliance with Title IX, Reading Area Community College (RACC) prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in employment as well as in all programs and activities.
Title IX Coordinator
In accordance with Title IX regulations, RACC has designated Patricia R. Helfenstein, Director of Grant Development & Management, as the College’s Title IX Coordinator. She is responsible for tracking and monitoring incidents of gender based discrimination, including misconduct, to ensure the college responds effectively to each complaint, and where necessary, for conducting investigations of particular situations. Questions regarding Title IX, as well as concerns and complaints of non-compliance, may be directed to her.
The College has also designated Susan Costa, Director of Occupational Programs, and Maria Dodson, Director of Respiratory Care, as Title IX Deputy Coordinators. They are responsible for receiving student or employee complaints of sexual harassment, including sexual assault, sexual violence or other sexual misconduct, against other RACC students or employees. The Coordinator and Deputy Coordinators are knowledgeable about, and will provide information on, all options for complaint resolution. Those options may vary depending on the nature of the complaint, whether the complainant is a student, faculty or staff member, the wishes of the complainant regarding confidentiality and whether the complainant prefers to proceed formally or informally. Together, the Coordinator and Deputies play an integral role in carrying out the College's commitment to provide a positive learning, teaching and working environment for the entire community.
Complaints Under Title IX at RACC
Students: If you are a student who believes you have been subjected to (1) sexual harassment by College faculty or staff; or (2) any other form of gender discrimination under Title IX, you may report such misconduct or file a formal complaint with the Title IX Coordinator in the Presidents Office Area, or Deputy Title IX Coordinators in the Gateway Center and Penn Hall. If you are a student who believes you have been or are the victim of sexual harassment, including sexual assault, sexual violence or other sexual misconduct, by another College student, you may report such conduct or file a complaint under Title IX with the Title IX Coordinator in the President’s Office Area or with Deputy Title IX Coordinators in the Gateway Center or Penn Hall.
Employees: If you are an employee who believes you have been subjected to discrimination under Title IX, including sexual harassment, or who wishes to file a complaint under Title IX, you can do so with the Title IX Coordinator in the Presidents Office Area or with Deputy Title IX Coordinators in the Gateway Center or Penn Hall.
Discrimination and Harrasment Complaint Procedures - PDF 153 KB
Discrimination and Harrasment Complaint Form - PDF 89 KB
Patricia R. Helfenstein, Title IX Coordinator
Presidents Office Area
10 South 2nd St., Box 1706, Reading, PA.19603
Phone: 601.372.4721 Ext. 5016
Maria Dodson, Title IX Deputy Coordinator
Penn Hall, Room 409, S. Front St., Box 1706, Reading, PA 19603
Phone: 610.372.4721 Ext. 5435
Sue Costa, Title IX Deputy Coordinator
Gateway Center, Room 422, Box 1706, Reading, PA 19603
Phone: 610-372-4721 Ext. 5708
Who Enforces Title IX?
The United States Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is in charge of enforcing Title IX. Information regarding OCR can be found at www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/index.html.
Failure to Comply with Title IX
The penalty for failure to comply with Title IX in the most extreme circumstances can include the termination of all or part of an institution’s federal funding. This includes grants, subsidies, and other program funds from the federal government. In addition to the loss of federal funds, institutions may be sued by those seeking redress for violations of Title IX. It is essential that institutions receiving federal financial assistances operate in a nondiscriminatory manner. While compliance with the law is everyone’s responsibility at RACC, the staff members who have primary responsibility for Title IX compliance are listed under Contact Information.
Title IX: Resources for Victims
Title IX Information
Office for Violence Against Women
Established by the Violence Against Women Act, the Office on Violence Against Women is designed to reduce violence against women and strengthen resources for all survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking.
National Domestic Violence Hotline
Established by the Violence Against Women Act, the National Domestic Violence Hotline provides twenty-four hour support for people facing domestic violence.
Stalking Resource Center
Part of the National Center for Victims of Crime, the Stalking Resource Center provides assistance and guidance for those impacted by stalking.
Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN)
This nonprofit organization has a twenty-four-hour hotline for anonymous support for people dealing with sexual assault and their friends and families.
The National Suicide Prevention Hotline
This nonprofit organization has a twenty-four-hour, toll-free confidential suicide prevention hotline.