Thursday, March 5, 2015

Day 63: title nine

Those  of you are are following my Living Learning Mobile adventures know that we've arrived in Austin, Texas and are looking forward to attending SxSw EDU and SxSw Interactive this month.  On our walk back from Whole Foods yesterday,  we walked by a shop that caught my attention.  The shop was named title nine.    I started wondering how many people connected with this shop's name as they walked by.

We had two armfuls of groceries so we didn't go in, yet, but I checked them out online and loved  this image on their website.  It's subtle and says so much.

Upon further exploration of their website I was not surprised to read about their models  and their sustainability mission.   It's so Austin... and one of the reasons we love Austin. 

But I was surprised that their page called What is Title IX was limited in its interpretation of Title IX. 

Most people who are familiar with Title IX don't know that the 1972 legislation had very little mention of athletics.  The focus of the original 1972 legislation was on the employment practices of college and universities.    Although Title IX has positively contributed to equal opportunities for women in athletics,  it has made an impact on the lives of women and girls in so many areas.  

Take a minute to learn more about the  many different areas that Title IX has impacted our lives.  

Many people have never heard of Title IX. Most people who know about Title IX think it applies only to sports, but athletics is only one of 10 key areas addressed by the law. These areas are: Access to Higher Education, Career Education, Education for Pregnant and Parenting Students, Employment, Learning Environment, Math and Science, Sexual Harassment, Standardized Testing and Technology.

Probably one of the best accounts of the history of Title IX I have heard was straight from the mouth of Dr. Bernice Sandler at at talk she gave at Darmouth.  I have frequently quoted "from memory"  some of the stories that  the Grandmother of Title IX shared about the birth and journey of Title IX.   Walking by this store today brought back memories of an evening in 2002 sitting in awe that it had only been 30 years since the the the birth of  IX and how much has changed in such a short period of time. In getting ready for this blog post today,  I was lucky enough to find an article written by Bernice Sandler which is almost as good at listening to her tell the story herself.   

One of the most interesting parts of her story was how the strategic silence of women helped give women an even stronger voice. 

As the bill drew close to passage,  a group of women (including myself) who represented women's organizations,  met with Rep. Green to offer our lobbying services.  She informed us that it would be better it we did not lobby because there was no opposition to the bill, and the less that people knew about the bill, the better its chances were for passage.  We were skeptical, but she was absolutely right.   
In the spring of 1972, two years after the hearings, a portion of Rep. Green's original bill became law when Title VII of the Civil Rights Act was amended by Congress in a separate action to cover all employees in educational institutions.   Initially, Rep. Green  had also initially sought to amend Title VI of the Civil Rights Act ( prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, color and national origin in all federally-funded activities) to include sex discrimination.  However,  at the urging of African-American leaders and others, who were worried that opening Title VI for amendment could weaken its coverage, she proposed a separate and new title, which became Title IX.  In its final form, Title IX was identical to that of Title VI, except that it was restricted to educational activities,  contained additional exemptions and included the amendment to the Equal Pay Act.  On June 23, 1972,  Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, was passed by the Congress and on July 1, was signed into law by President Richard Nixon.    from "Too Strong for a Women.. The Five Words that Created Title IX"

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