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Communicate with the Senate

June 25, 1999


TO: Kenneth Mortimer
University of Hawai`i-Manoa

FROM: John Cox, Chair, Senate Committee on Athletics
Dina R. Yoshimi, Chair, Subcommittee on Gender Equity

RE: Senate Committee on Athletics Gender Equity Report for AY1997-1998

We are submitting this report on behalf of the members of the Senate Committee on Athletics in accordance with the oversight responsibilities proposed for this committee in the Athletics Department Gender Equity Plan. In Section 1, we present areas where the Athletics Department continues to make progress towards the goals set out in its Gender Equity Plan. In Sections 2 and 3, we have identified areas where greater efforts and more effective actions are clearly necessary. We have made specific recommendations for remedial action in conjunction with many of the findings. Recognizing the financial difficulties currently facing the Athletics Department, we have endeavored to propose courses of action that will result in the greatest gains in gender equity at no cost, or at a very low cost. It is our sincere hope that this report will contribute to the ultimate attainment of the goals set out in the Athletics Department Gender Equity Plan.

1. Progress towards goals for 1997-1998 outlined in the Gender Equity Plan of the Athletics Department

a. In AY1997-98, consistent with point I.3 in the Athletics Department Gender Equity plan, the Assistant Athletics Director conducted the annual workshop for the Athletics Department staff on the requirements of Title IX. The workshop for AY1998-1999 is scheduled for June 2, 1999.

b. In AY1997-98, the Assistant Athletics Director prepared and distributed a report on the Athletics Department budget compiled in accordance with the federally mandated Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act. This report provides detailed information pertinent to the department's compliance with its own Gender Equity Plan.

COA Recommendation: The Athletic Department should also provide an annual report summarizing progress in and ongoing compliance with all areas of its Gender Equity Plan (e.g., dissemination of the department's statement of policy, departmental organization, marketing practices, etc.).

c. The budget for women's programs addressed all five of the specific goals for Year 2 (1997-98) of the Gender Equity Plan (p. 14). Three of these five goals were met at a level equal to or above the stated target. The remaining two goals were not funded at the targeted levels.

--The assistant swimming coach became a full-time position.

--Travel funding for the women's sailing team was provided at a level slightly more than $4,000.00 in excess of the planned amount.

--Funding was provided for women's water polo operating costs at a level slightly more than $32,000.00 in excess of the planned amount.

--Funding was allocated for the coach of Women's Sailing; however the amount allocated was approximately 25% less ($1,900.00) than planned for.

--Funding for recruiting was provided at a level slightly higher than targeted ($22,000.00 rather than 19,000.00). However, these funds were not fully allocated to women's recruitment. In this sense,

the goal regarding improvements in the equitable distribution of recruiting funds was not effectively addressed. (See Section 2.)

d. In the area of capital improvements, efforts are being made to improve the condition of the women's soccer practice field. The 1998-1999 Legislature passed a bill to fund the refurbishing of the upper field to provide both a women's soccer field and a football practice field. The site had been exclusively used by Women's Soccer from 1997.

COA Recommendation: Since the plan for field improvements will address the needs of both women's soccer and football, we recommend that there be strict oversight of the project to ensure that resources will be equitably distributed such that the two new fields will reflect the Athletic Department's commitment to parity in facilities for women's and men's athletics.

e. Construction of the women's softball stadium was completed in time for the 1998 season. However, the severely flawed construction of the facility clearly tempers the value of this development. With the conclusion of the 1999 season, construction to remedy the flaws in the softball stadium has begin. In addition to repairs to the flawed design, there will be additional improvements that will add to the overall quality of the facility: 1) a new outfield will be put in place with proper irrigation and a new sprinkler system and 2) sunken dugouts will be built.

Despite these unexpected additions (both part of the planned Phase II of the stadium), the lack of parity between the women's softball stadium and the men's baseball stadium remains far from resolved. Most notably, the women's facility will remain substandard as there will still not be full visibility of the field from all seats in the stadium even after the repairs are completed. Equally unacceptable is the lack of officials rooms, locker rooms, equipment rooms, meeting rooms, coaches offices and a concession area, all part of the existing men's facility, but all cut from the women's facility in a cost-saving measure. The lack of officials' rooms in the facility is a particular embarrassment to the university since the officials have no choice but to hang their gear on the fence under the bleachers, and to provide their own chairs if they officiate more than one game (i.e., during a tournament).

COA Recommendation: Although further improvements to the softball stadium are planned for in Phase II, there is currently no concrete plan to fund these improvements. With funding for the Soccer/Track & Field stadium now requiring immediate attention, it is unclear when additional funding to upgrade the softball facility will become available. The current substandard facility, then, symbolizes a lack of commitment to the spirit and principles of gender equity. The development of women's athletic facilities must not be subject to the cut-rate approach that characterized the planning and construction of the softball stadium. Sufficient funds must be allocated from the outset to ensure all women's facilities are developed and constructed in a way that results in parity between men's and women's athletics.

f. The addition of women's water polo and women's sailing have contributed to increasing the total number of female participants, raising the male/female participation ratio to 58.1%/41.9% for AY1997-1998. In AY1998-99, the Athletics Department has made an effort to maintain the men's squad sizes at the "ideal squad size" while encouraging the women's teams to field squads approximately two players over this ideal figure. This policy has enabled a small increase in participation opportunities for women in AY1998-99, resulting in a 57.5/42.5 male/female participation ratio.

g. The distribution of scholarships in AY 1997-98 was on a par with the participation ratio (i.e., approximately 58% of scholarships are awarded to male athletes and approximately 42% are awarded to female athletes).

h. Funds were allocated to develop a ticket purchase brochure for all arena sports establishing a measure of equity in the marketing of men's and women's arena sports. There has also been an effort to improve the marketing of Women's Basketball, including more money being provided for advertising (TV/radio).

i. In Spring 1999, consistent with point 3.C.4 of the Gender Equity Plan (p. 18), the department established guidelines for equitable provision of tutors on roadtrips.

j. Consistent with point 3.C.5 of the Gender Equity Plan (p. 18), all athletes receive the same per diem for meals ($25.00/day) while on roadtrips.

2. Goals for 1997-1998 outlined in the Gender Equity Plan of the Athletics Department that were not met:

a. The Athletics Department has taken a limited role in publicizing the principles outlined in its 1993 Statement of Policy on Gender Equity. Consistent with the Athletic Department's Plan for Achieving Gender Equity (pp. 5-6), the statement now appears in all media guides and in the Student-Athlete Handbook. However, the statement does not appear in the Athletics Department's Staff Handbook, nor has it been posted "in a prominent place in every major University athletic facility. "Moreover, copies of the statement have not been regularly disseminated (i.e., on an annual basis) to the Athletic Advisory Board, the Manoa Faculty Senate Committee on Athletics, athletic booster clubs, or other appropriate organizations.

COA Recommendation: The lack of compliance with this aspect of its own plan suggests less than a full commitment to the publicizing of the departmental policy on gender equity. Since compliance with Title IX requires the full cooperation and support of Athletics Department staff, the Athletics Department should take immediate steps to include its Statement of Policy on Gender Equity in its Staff Handbook and to provide the revised handbook to all members of its staff. Moreover, in order to raise awareness of the department's commitment to gender equity among the members of the university and local communities, the Athletics Department should take immediate steps to post its policy "in a prominent place in every major University athletic facility, including the lobby of the Athletics Department offices" as was proposed in the Athletics Department's plan (p. 5). The posting of the statement should be done in such a way that regular maintenance of the posted information is not necessary (e.g., signs should be laminated or be printed on posterboard). Finally, the Athletics Department should implement a procedure whereby copies of its Statement of Policy on Gender Equity are provided on an annual basis to the members of the Athletic Advisory Board, the Manoa Faculty Senate Committee on Athletics, athletic booster clubs, and other appropriate organizations.

b. With regard to budgeting, there was a clear failure to meet the Gender Equity Plan's Year 2 (1997-98) goal for moving toward parity in spending on recruiting (p. 14). The plan provided for an additional $19,000.00 to be budgeted for women's recruitment. While a total of $22,000.00 was, in fact, added to the 1997-98 recruitment budget ($3,000 more than planned for), more than half of this was spent on men's recruiting costs. As a result, there was no progress towards achieving parity in this area of spending.

COA Recommendation: Recruiting remains an area where the distribution of resources is flagrantly inequitable: 74% for men's sports vs. 26% for women's sports. A greater effort must be made to hold down men's recruiting costs and additional resources must be channeled towards efforts to recruit women athletes. These resources should not only include all of the funds planned for in Years 3, 4 and 5 of the Gender Equity Plan (i.e., $19,000.00/year), but also any additional funds required to reach parity in the distribution of funds for recruiting.

c. Capital Improvements: The COA notes with regret that, of the two requests for the improvement of women's athletic facilities sent to the Legislature this year -- the development of a soccer stadium and the joint project for improving the soccer practice field and adding a football practice field -- it is the request which will have relatively little impact on improving the inequity between men's and women's facilities that was passed by the Legislature. This outcome is particularly disturbing given the statement of the Athletic Department's priorities outlined in the Capital Improvements section of the Gender Equity Plan (pp. 16-17) which states that "the construction of these two facilities [the softball stadium and the soccer stadium] will take priority over any other new construction projects, including improvements to existing facilities..."

COA Recommendation: All parties involved in decisions regarding the funding of capital improvements (e.g., the President, the Legislature) need to be made aware that the soccer stadium (which could double as a Track & Field facility) must be the top priority in capital improvements for reasons of Title IX compliance. A stadium that would provide adequate, quality seating (approximately 5,000 capacity), lighting for night games, coaches offices, locker rooms, officials rooms, media facilities, etc. is necessary to establish parity between facilities for men's and women's field sports. Currently, there is no on-campus facility for Women's Soccer competitions; as a result, games are played in Ala Wai Park on a baseball field, where there is no permanent seating or other facilities. There is a possibility that some games might be played on the on-campus soccer practice field; however, the lack of lighting, locker room facilities, etc. makes the site less than desirable. With the defeat of the soccer stadium bill, there is currently no other plan under consideration for creating parity between the women's soccer facilities and those for men's field sports.

d. Increasing participation opportunities: Although the Athletic Department's gender equity report for 1997-98 states the university's commitment to "adding the sport of track & field in the 2000-2001 academic year", there has been no progress towards the addition of an Indoor or an Outdoor Women's Track & Field Team. This step is presented in the Gender Equity Plan as part of the department's strategy for achieving parity in participation opportunities. The alternate suggestion, a Women's Crew team, has been explored by the Assistant Athletic Director. However, there is no existing pool of athletes in Hawai`i for this sport, and, apart from the Ala Wai (which is already used heavily by the canoe clubs), there is no existing facility for rowing. Moreover, our athletes would be at a disadvantage when competing away from home since they would have to rent or borrow equipment (which would also add to the cost of the sport).

COA Recommendation: Further progress towards achieving equity in participation opportunities, a critical benchmark with regard to Title IX compliance, is contingent on the addition of new women's teams. The Athletic Department should actively pursue its plans to create Indoor and Outdoor Women's Track & Field teams by hiring a coach, allocating funds for recruitment, scholarships, equipment and other operating expenses, and developing a quality facility for Track & Field (possibly at Cooke Field). This matter must be addressed with the greatest urgency since we will need to have an active team and a competitive facility by 2002 in order to be in compliance with Title IX.

e. As mentioned in Section 2a of last year's committee report, the 1996 NCAA Peer Review Team's concern with the overall organization of the Athletics Department has not been addressed, despite a proposal in the Gender Equity Plan to do so in Fall 1996. Moreover, "reporting relationships" (an issue specifically identified as problematic by the NCAA Peer Review Team) are now split nearly along gender lines, with the coaches of the major men's sports teams -- football, baseball, basketball and volleyball -- reporting directly to the Athletic Director and all coaches of women's' teams plus the coaches of Men's Swimming, Gold and Tennis reporting to the Assistant Athletic Director. A second persistent problem in the area of Athletics Department organization involves the failure to establish the position of Senior Woman Administrator (SWA) and clearly identify the responsibilities of this position. Although the Assistant Athletic Director has been operating and continues to operate in the capacity of SWA, this title is not included in her job description. In fact, the Assistant AD continues to operate under an outdated job description (i.e., a description from the 1980's that was used for the previous Assistant AD).

COA Recommendation: We join the Athletic Advisory Board Subcommittee on Gender Equity in noting the significance of these issues, and we recommend that they be addressed without any further delay. Regarding the first issue, the course of action proposed in the Athletics Department Gender Equity Plan provides a clear solution: the creation of "a tier of Associate Athletic Directors, each responsible for a certain number
of teams with no coaches reporting directly to the Athletics Director" (p. 9). Also, this "organizational plan should have no relation to the history of the athletics program, so that women's sports are not treated merely as supplementary to the men's" (p. 9). The resolution of the second issue is equally clear. As stated in the 1998 report of the Subcommittee on Gender Equity of the Athletic Advisory Board, "the job description of the Director of Women's sports [should] be updated to include the SWA designation" and the current duties and responsibilities of this position should be reviewed. "If the position includes increased duties and responsibilities additional to those already performed, the pay scale/classification should reflect this."

f. During AY1997-98, there was no attempt to address the loss of all permanent meeting room facilities for Women's Athletics that resulted from the construction of the new Academic Center (point 4d in last year's COA report). Currently, all meeting room facilities are allocated to Men's Athletics: the three meeting rooms in the Physical Education Athletics Complex are assigned to "Football Offense", "Football Defense" and "Men's Basketball", respectively, while the six, newly-refurbished meeting rooms adjacent to the football locker rooms are allocated to football and are not made available by facilities management to other sports, even when there is no conflict with scheduled meetings for football. This privileging of Men's Athletics, and football in particular, without any regular allocation of meeting facilities for any women's teams would appear to be a clear violation of Title IX.

COA Recommendation: The signs should be taken off of the three meeting rooms in the Athletics Complex immediately and these rooms should be made available to all teams in an equitable way (e.g., first-come, first-served scheduling).

3. Partial accomplishment of goals and other areas in need of improvements

a. The Gender Equity Plan (p. 19) indicates an ongoing commitment to the hiring of women for positions on the coaching staff, particularly for head coach positions. Currently only the Water Polo Team and the Golf Team have female head coaches. However, all Women's and most Co-ed teams -- the Swimming and Sailing Teams are the exceptions -- have at least one female head or assistant coach.

COA Recommendation: The near total absence of female head coaches at UH should be viewed with some concern. While the long tenure of some of the coaches of women's teams (i.e., basketball, volleyball, cross-country) may preclude immediate change in these sports, every effort should be made to hire a qualified, female coach when new women's sports teams are added (i.e., soccer, water polo, track & field). Ensuring that high quality, female candidates apply for openings in women's team and co-ed team coaching positions may require serious recruiting efforts on the part of the Athletic Department. These costs should be considered an important investment in the Athletics Department's commitment to gender equity. The absence of a female coach for the Co-ed Sailing Team should also be remedied as promptly as possible.

b. There is currently no clear system for ensuring that all athletes receive equitable treatment with regard to material benefits provided to teams (e.g., uniforms, equipment).

COA Recommendation: A careful accounting of the perks (e.g., uniforms, equipment) each team receives through agreements with sponsors must be maintained. The Athletic Department must endeavor to balance these perks by budgeting additional funds to those teams not supported by sponsorship agreements so that the members of said teams may have equal access to such benefits. The recent purchase of athletic shoes for the Women's Cross-Country Team, for example, should be the rule rather than the exception.

c. Although the Gender Equity Plan (pp. 18-9) states that a comprehensive marketing plan for all team sports will be developed by March 1996, and subsequently be reviewed by Gender Equity Subcommittee of the AAB, no such plan has yet been provided.

COA Recommendation: While the ticket purchasing brochure for Men's and Women's Arena Sports, and the increased funds allocated to advertising for Women's Basketball are steps in the right direction, a marketing plan that includes all women's sports, not simply arena sports, must be developed and followed.

d. The Gender Equity Plan states that "all head coaches and full-time assistant coaches will have their own offices" (p. 19). Inequity in the allocation of office space to the coaches of some women's teams remained the status quo in 1997-1998. While plans for the equitable distribution of office space were drawn up in Spring 1999, these plans cannot be implemented until the Stan Sheriff Center is completed (with completion currently being held up by disagreements between the developer and the contractor). Thus, the inequitable distribution of office space has still not been fully resolved.

e. The Gender Equity Plan (p. 15) notes that additional support staff will need to be hired in order to manage the additional workload created by the increase in women athletes. However, no additional support staff were hired in 1997-98 or 1998-1999.

COA Recommendation: With the current budget deficit and other needs (e.g., coaching staff, recruitment dollars) taking priority with respect to Title IX compliance, it is unlikely that additional support staff can be hired at this time. Therefore, the Athletic Department should conduct a review to determine whether the existing support staff are equitably addressing the needs of both men's and women's teams and both male and female athletes. If there is a lack of parity detected, the available human resources should be redistributed in a more equitable way.

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