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Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane, LLP Attorney Presents Workshop on Title IX

 

Felicia Vasudevan, an attorney at Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane, LLP, presented a training workshop on Title IX last month. Ms. Vasudevan is one of the Firm’s experts on Title IX, and often provides trainings for clients on the subject. During this workshop Ms. Vasudevan described what Title IX was and how it can lead to an investigation. Sexual harassment is defined as any form of sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or any other verbal and/or physical conduct of sexual nature. She then went on to outline the words associated with Title IX; complainant, respondent, actual knowledge, and supportive measures. She emphasized that there is no statute of limitations on timing to file a formal complaint for sexual harassment, and urged anyone who experienced any form to contact their District Title IX Coordinator. Ms. Vasudevan explained the process of filing a formal complaint, the informal resolution vs investigation options, and the fact that retaliation of any kind is strictly prohibited.

 

Ms. Vasudevan is an attorney in the firm’s Education Law and Special Education Law Groups, working in regular and special education issues. She represents school districts in all aspects of special education litigation, from administrative hearings at the Massachusetts Bureau of Special Education Appeals (BSEA) through all levels of judicial appeal. She represents school districts in matters of student discipline, civil rights issues, collective bargaining, public procurement, and employment issues.  Ms. Vasudevan presents workshops to both client groups and at state conferences such as the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (MCLE). These workshops are on a variety of relevant education issues such as conducting investigations, evaluations, special education, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, state and federal student record regulations, bullying, and civil rights laws. Ms. Vasudevan received her Bachelor’s Degree from Stanford University, with a major in Public Policy and her Juris Doctor degree from Harvard Law School. Prior to law school, she taught high school mathematics for two years in San Jose, California, as part of Teach for America, and trained the incoming Teach for America Corps Members at Teach for America’s Summer Institute.

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Legal Updates

MARIJUANA REFORM BILL BECOMES LAW

On August 12, 2022, Governor Charlie Baker signed S. 3096, “An act relative to equity in the cannabis industry,” (“Act”) into law. The Act reforms Massachusetts’s existing marijuana laws, particularly with respect to host community agreements (“HCAs”), community impact fees (“CIFs”), and social consumption sites (e.g. marijuana cafes). The Act empowers the Cannabis Control Commission (“Commission”), the state regulatory agency, to exert greater control over HCAs and their CIFs. Municipalities levy CIFs on cannabis businesses to account for the costs they impose on the municipality as a result of their operations. Additionally, the Act allows municipalities to permit on-premises social consumption of marijuana at designated sites. Other notable provisions of the Act include the new Social Equity Trust Fund (“Trust Fund”), changes to the tax law regarding cannabis businesses, and various provisions concerning those persons and communities most impacted by the prior illegality of marijuana usage and sale. Governor Baker vetoed only one section of the final bill: the provision calling on the state to conduct a study of medical marijuana usage in schools.

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