College Sport

OSU asks court to mull Title IX issues in lawsuit

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State University is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review a law known as Title IX in a case that affects whether more than 230 men can file lawsuits against a school over a team’s sexual assault decades ago. Dr. Richard Strauss, who has since died.

The petition, filed on Tuesday, urges the high court to hear the case and consider two aspects: when the clock starts ticking down on the legal deadline for filing Title IX claims, which in this case concern the university’s alleged “deliberate indifference” to sexual harassment. ? And does the right to make such claims extend to people who are not students or employees there, such as fans attending football games or visitors visiting campus?

The school contends that the divided appellate court, which reopened the outstanding lawsuits against OSU, reached incorrect conclusions on both elements.

“Together, these rulings arm virtually anyone who has visited Ohio in the past 40 years with a potential Title IX claim today,” and that was not the outcome that Congress was looking for when it passed the law in 1972, the university’s legal team wrote in the magazine. petition to a higher court.

The university repeatedly apologized to those Strauss harmed and reached over $60 million in compensation for at least 296 survivors, but it ultimately attempted to close the remaining outstanding cases. He argued that the statute of limitations—the applicable two-year statute of limitations in Ohio—began during the doctor’s tenure and had long since passed.

But these remaining plaintiffs argued that the watch did not start until the allegations became public in 2018 because they had no reason to believe the university allowed or covered up the doctor’s behavior until then.

The appellate court’s concurrence with this, combined with its finding that multiple plaintiffs could have filed such Title IX claims even if they were not students or employees of OSU when the alleged abuse occurred, erroneously widened the scope of Title IX in such a way that it Problematic and Potential The State of Ohio claims it is very expensive for all kinds of schools under this law. His petition also states that the threat of Title IX lawsuits based on years-old allegations could deter schools from investigating such allegations.

He noted that the decision of the US Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati as to when the clock began ticking conflicted with the findings of federal appeals courts elsewhere, and stated that the inconsistency indicated the need for the nation’s Supreme Court to weigh it.

“We can all agree that the underlying violations here were reprehensible, but the Supreme Court must decide these fundamental legal issues for everyone going forward, regardless of the underlying allegations or facts,” said Gregory Garre, a lawyer representing OSU .

OSU said in a statement that “the issues presented are purely legal in nature and thus fall outside the scope of the specific circumstances set forth here.”

In a separate statement, it said his request to the court does not cast doubt on the plaintiffs’ testimony about the abuse, nor does it diminish his commitment to support survivors.

But a lawsuit is sure to disappoint plaintiffs, who allege they were treated unfairly by the state of Ohio. Meanwhile, the pending trials remain suspended for another few months while they wait to see if the case is heard in a limited number that the Supreme Court decides to hear.

The men are among hundreds of former student-athletes and other alumni who say they were abused by Strauss during his two decades at the school and that university officials were unable to stop him despite knowing about the complaints as early as in the late 1970s, very early. during the doctor there. Many of them allege that Strauss abused them during physical exams at campus sports facilities, the student health center, his home, and an off-campus clinic.

Strauss died in 2005. No one defended him publicly.


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