The woman behind the 2007 complaint against Adrian College (which OCR found to be out of compliance in 8 program areas) spoke recently at a Michigan chapter of the American Association of University Women. Molly Ziegler-Moore, an Adrian College alum and former coach, presented her version of the events leading up and during the OCR investigation of the school. We have noted repeatedly that Adrian College was one of the most egregious examples of violations that has been brought to light (click on the Adrian College tag for our many posts on this). I don’t think we realized just how much was going on before Ziegler-Moore decided that simply pointing out the inequities to administrators was not going to work.
We highlighted the multi-sport complex that lacked a women’s locker room (an administrator told her “oh, it’s in there”). A year later the hockey arena the hockey arena was built. It had a women’s locker room but it was smaller with inferior amenities. When the college announced it was building a $2 million baseball complex, Ziegler-Moore–the softball coach–was promised her team would also get facilities. But when listing all she desired for the new complex softball would receive–like no more port-o-potties–she was told the softball complex costs were being capped at $200,000. So she asked one of the school’s VPs if this was Title IX compliant. “Probably not” was his response.
I often discuss in my classes how discrimination can be subtle, sometimes even unintentional.
Not always, apparently.
I think Adrian College got off pretty easy on this one; largely because most employees were scared and Molly Ziegler-Moore was not out for for any kind of vengeance or compensation for the mistreatment of her or her athletes or female student-athletes as a whole. She just wanted the school to follow the law.
Later, after compiling a “wish list” of improvements to replace the portable johns that female softball students were using, she learned that they would not be the same. The new softball complex would cost only $200,000. So she asked a vice president, “is that Title IX compliant?” #“Probably not,” he replied.
Read more at: http://www.monroenews.com/news/2012/nov/14/monroe-woman-details-fight-gender-equity/Later, after compiling a “wish list” of improvements to replace the portable johns that female softball students were using, she learned that they would not be the same. The new softball complex would cost only $200,000. So she asked a vice president, “is that Title IX compliant?” #“Probably not,” he replied.
Read more at: http://www.monroenews.com/news/2012/nov/14/monroe-woman-details-fight-gender-equity/Another side of the story that Ziegler-Moore presented was about her own experiences confronting administrators prior to filing and her relationships within the school after she filed. She said she left due to the chilly environment after 15 years with the school and now works outside of sport. Colleagues did not want to be seen associating with her. She knows that had she stayed and been fired (a not-so-unlikely possibility), she could have filed a retaliation lawsuit. But her motivation for filing was to make the school a better place for all students; to make it a fair(er) institution. Of course people at the school resent the money that has to be spent to remedy the discrimination and probably the attention their combination of ignorance and willful discrimination garnered. Discriminatory practices may have changed, but have attitudes?