University of Iowa Settles with Student Who Claimed Nite Ride Discriminated against Men

Don Grove, Supervisor, Iowa Civil Rights Commission
(515) 281-0338
Tuesday, August 23, 2016

The Iowa Civil Rights Commission (ICRC) reached a settlement with the University of Iowa, resolving a complaint filed by a male student, alleging the University committed a discriminatory practice in violation of the “Iowa Civil Rights Act of 1965” (ICRA), when it implemented and enforced a sex-based policy that limited ridership on Nite Ride, its late-night transportation service, to females only.

The University acknowledged that the ICRA prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in the offering and provision of this type of program or service and agreed to change its policy by removing sex as a qualification for ridership.  The University agreed to advertise this significant change by issuing a press release, modifying its materials and publications related to Nite Ride, and posting an announcement on its website.  The University also agreed to pay the student who filed the complaint with the ICRC the sum of $5,000 in compensation for his expenses and hardship as a result of being denied its Nite Ride service. 

The formal agreement was reached after an ICRC investigator conducted a full and fair investigation into the student’s complaint.  The investigator recommended probable cause to believe discrimination occurred. An administrative law judge with the Iowa Department of Inspections & Appeals reviewed the investigation and agreed.  An ICRC conciliator then worked with the parties to formulate terms of settlement to resolve the complaint by ending the practice and fairly compensating the student who filed the complaint.

Don Grove, ICRC Supervisor, states: “I thank the student who filed the complaint for bringing the issue to ICRC.  I thank the University for cooperating with our investigation. And I thank both the student and the University for their commitment and efforts in getting the matter resolved amicably.  And, of course, I thank ICRC staff in processing the complaint timely and professionally.”

The settlement can be accessed at ICRC’s website.  See