Winter v. Pennsylvania State University, 2016 WL1110215 (M.D.Pa. 2016).

Winter is yet another good decision explaining that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 does not preempt Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 regarding gender based employment claims.

The confusion has arisen due to the much heralded and oft quoted yet wrongly decided Lakoski v. James, 66 F.3d 751, 755 (5th Cir. 1995). The Fifth Circuit chose to completely ignore the Supreme Court’s holding in North Haven Board of Education v. Bell, 456 U.S. 512 (1982) and the historical background of  and the interplay between the Title IX and the Equal Employment Opportunities Act, which were both passed within months of each other in 1972.

Winter went on to follow precedent set by other courts which allowed gender based employment claims under Title IX, citing Ivan v. Kent State Univ., No. 94-4090, 1996 WL 422496, at *3 n.10 (6th Cir. 1996) (overruling the district court’s conclusion “that Title VII preempts an individual’s private remedy under Title IX”); Preston v. Commonwealth of Virginia ex rel. New River Cmty. Coll., 31 F.3d 203, 205-06 (4th Cir. 1994) (“An implied private right of action exists for enforcement of Title IX…. [which] extends to employment discrimination on the basis of gender by educational institutions receiving federal funds.”) (citation omitted); Gupta v. Albright Coll., No. Civ-A-05-1921, 2006 WL 162977, at *3 (E.D. Pa. Jan. 19, 2006) 4 ; A.B. ex rel. C.D. v. Rhinebeck Cent. Sch. Dist., 224 F.R.D. 144, 153 (S.D.N.Y. 2004) (“Title IX was intended by Congress to function as an additional safeguard against gender-based discrimination in the context of federally funded education programs; notwithstanding the possibility of other available remedies, including without limitation those available under Title VII.”); Hensche v. N.Y. Hospital-Cornell Medical Center, 821 F. Supp. 166, 171-73 (S.D.N.Y. 1993) (rejecting the defendants’ argument that Title VII preempted Title IX and explaining that Cannon, North Haven, and Franklin read together stood for the proposition that Title IX was intended to “serve as an additional protection against gender-based discrimination in educational programs receiving federal funding regardless of the availability of a remedy under Title VII”); Bowers v. Baylor Univ., 862 F. Supp. 142, 144-45 (W.D. Tex. 1994) (holding that a private cause of action for damages exists under Title IX for gender based employment discrimination).

The Court goes on to hold that if Congress wanted to limit Title IX to student claims only, it would not have used the term “any person” in the statutory language and that the two statutes Title VII and Title IX are co-extensive in this regard.


Stacey Greinke contributed to this posting.
This posting is not meant for legal advice.
If you believe you have been discriminated against, you should contact a qualified attorney in your state