Find out what questions to ask your college administrators and counselors

Does your college anti-sexual assault program do this?

 

A well-functioning college or university will have several strategies and programs in place that directly and effectively address sexual assault, including:

  1. A clear and focused mission and vision for their sexual assault program that recognizes the complexity and diversity of modern college campus life while recognizing their duty to lessen the risks and incidence of sexual assault on campus and within the student body.
  2. Comprehensive sexual assault education programs targeted toward freshman that discuss the legal context, student code of conduct, and clearly identifies resources and processes for addressing sexual assault.
  3. Incorporation of human sexuality education nested in contemporary college student attitudes and behavior to broaden awareness and empathy for diverse viewpoints and establishing individual dignity and sovereignty as a core value.
  4. Self-defense education and training as primary prevention and risk reduction strategies tailored to the needs of today’s college students.
  5. Comprehensive bystander education and intervention programs that are well attended and reach out to a broad base of the student body.
  6. An effective, timely and efficient process for assessing sexual assault charges on a case-by-case basis with that protect and support the victim without compromising the rights and dignity of the accused.
  7. Diverse adjudication procedures that extend to non-adversarial and more collaborative programs such as Restorative Justice, going beyond conventional local law enforcement engagement and the criminal justice system.
  8. Trauma-sensitive support services that assist and support survivors on their healing journey.
  9. Well-defined and mutually respectful relationships between college administrators and local law enforcement agencies with trauma sensitive training and procedures in place.
  10. Active and broad-based participation by student groups in addressing sexual assault, prevention, and risk reduction.Type your paragraph here.

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What you can do....

 

Many people have asked me what I would recommend parents or their college-age stduents do when they hear about my interest and research on college sexual assault. Here are 10 proactive steps that can lessen the risk of becoming a victim and improve the overall climate on campuses. Among these actions are:

  1. Enroll in a martial-arts based self-defense program as early as middle school or ninth grade that includes scenario-based training and situational awareness.
  2. Encourage high schools to include human sexuality in their curricula so that students are at least exposed to professional opinion about sex, intimacy, and human bonding, and why sexual assault and rape can be so devastating.
  3. Encourage high school college counselors to include workshops on the risks and dangers on modern campus life, including bystander roles, responsibilities, and interventions.
  4. Encourage parent groups and associations to hold workshops on campus sexual assault, risk reduction, and prevention.
  5. Encourage adult discussions with teenagers and college-age children about sexual assault and how it impacts their lives and the lives of their friends.
  6. Be open to a wide range of remedies and strategies for addressing sexual assault on college campuses while also insisting on evidence-based accountability in the programs;
  7. Insist that colleges and universities hold offenders accountable, and provide evidence that their programs are reducing risks of sexual assault faced by students.
  8. Read the campus sexual assault policies for the colleges and universities students plan to attend.
  9. Ask for data on sexual assaults, investigations, and the results of those investigations.
  10. Ensure college-bound students are aware of programs and support available to them and their friends at the schools they plan to attend.Type your paragraph here.

Six questions for college and university and admissions staff

 

High school officials and parents don’t bear sole responsibility for changing the campus climate. Parents and college students can also become powerful and effective advocates for change and accountability. Among the questions they should ask college and university administrators are:

  1. What programs are in place to assist victims, reduce the risks of sexual assault, prevent sexual assault, and hold offenders accountability? What performance measures do you use to evaluate their effectiveness?
  2. How education programming do you provide to freshman on sexual assault and bystander intervention? What is the participation rate?
  3. Is dorm staff trained in sexual assault awareness, bystander intervention and victim support?
  4. What fraternities, sororities or students groups are active in providing sexual assault prevention, risk reduction, and other training to students on campus?
  5. How does your college or university benchmark its performance among its peers?
  6. How often does your college or university review its sexual assault, victim advocate, and adjudication policies?

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