This post from PreventConnect highlights an interview done by PreventConnect’s David Lee with Monika Johnson Hostler, Executive Director of the North Carolina Coalition Against Sexual Assault, about the new film, My Masculinity Helps. As the two discussed, the film can be used as a tool to engage African American men and boys in examining gender roles, masculinity, and power; identify men and boys’ roles and responsibilities in the prevention of rape and sexual assault; and support men and boys to be educators, advocates, and activists for the prevention of sexual violence. Now, the filmmakers have just released a facilitation guide to assist in efforts to use the movie to create social change. Learn more about the film and access the guide on mymasculinityhelps.com.
It’s around that time of year where summer will soon fade and college classes will be back in session. While students are making sure they are registered for all the right courses, some institutions of higher education also want to be as prepared as possible before the school year begins by attempting to quickly establish reformed practices and policies addressing sexual violence.
However, is it really in the best interest of students to make hasty decisions and “improvements”? Understandably, making quick turnaround decisions is better for an institution’s reputation as “leaders” and to ensure federal compliance, but does this also guarantee that quality changes are being implemented?
According to the Boston Globe, Harvard’s undergraduate college has “a revamped policy” on campus sexual assault, created a centralized office to review reports of sexual assault, adopted the DOE’s recommended “preponderance of evidence standard” for adjudication, and replaced academic administrators a part of the adjudication process with staff experienced in investigating sexual assault.
USA Today also reported on Dartmouth’s Summit on Sexual Assault, where more than 60 colleges met to hear from federal officials, consult with national experts, and share strategies on how to improve handling cases of sexual violence. Furthermore, the article states that Dartmouth in particular has made efforts to address the issue by creating procedures to investigate complaints, opening a sexual assault prevention center, and creating a committee that will provide a list of recommendations on next steps.
At first glance, many would praise colleges and universities like Harvard and Dartmouth for finally taking important measures to address campus sexual violence at an institutional level. Some might say that it is better to quickly take initiative and make instant improvements than none at all (especially if the college is under the microscope of the federal government and the public eye). However, it is significantly important for college administrators to pause and evaluate if they are sacrificing the safety of their campus community by making fast-paced “improvements” that could result in poorly revised changes that cause more harm than good. Instead, the campus community would most likely benefit if administrators are discussing and implementing changes under the guidance of and in collaboration with survivors, students, and survivor-centered community-based organizations. In fact, this should be the leadership style that school administrators practice because I believe people within the community know their needs -and assets- best.
Survivors, students, and the entire campus community deserve high-quality, intentional, and collaborative improvements that have been thoughtfully and strategically planned, organized, and implemented to sincerely promote a violence-free campus. A patient, methodical, and collaborative process is a key leadership approach in addressing campus sexual violence.
Post written by Fátima Avellán, Campus Project Associate at the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault (CALCASA). Photo from USA Today.
A newsletter created by the Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women’s Campus Technical Assistance and Resource Project 2nd issue, includes information on the research of security during study abroad, national awareness activities and events, technical assistance (TA) updates, and TA contacts. Click the link to view the newsletter for April 2014.
The Stalking Resource Center from the National Center for Victims of Crime released a resource in 2009 called How to Start and Facilitate a Support Group for Victims of Stalking. The guide describes its purpose as:
…to guide victim service providers, volunteers, and other concerned community members on how to initiate and implement a stalking support group. This handbook provides recommendations on how to locate partners and community support, identify resources, and engage victims who would like to participate in a stalking support group. It offers guidance on how to choose a leader or facilitator, how to prepare the leader, and how to run support group sessions that help members cope with the impact of stalking.
In this webinar hosted by Green Dot, Dr. Cruz talked about ways in which campuses can ensure they are being inclusive of and affirmative toward LGTBQ students. Dr. Cruz defined key terms and spoke about what to do and not do when engaging LGBTQ students. Dr. Cruz gave suggestions for ways campuses can improve their reach and meaningfully engage LGBTQ students on their campuses. She also answered questions about attitudes toward LGBTQ student groups, training judicial boards on hearing cases involving LGBTQ students, and where campuses can find resources to help them with their prevention efforts with regard to LGBTQ students.
To view the webinar slides click here
This webinar presented by Green Dot entitled, “In Scoring a Hat Trick: Three Ways to Maximize your Partnerships with Athletics,” presenters Darcie Folsom and CC Curtis of Connecticut College provided concrete suggestions for ways campus grantees can engage student athletes in their violence prevention efforts. Folsom and Curtis focused on three primary strategies: clearing the puck (investigating biases), planning for the power play (branding and relationship building), and the breakaway (making violence prevention the cool thing to do). Some of the concrete solutions offered during the webinar included attending athletic events, planning around athletes’ schedules, using a health promotion lens to engage athletes, identifying and building relationships with key athletic stakeholders, taking materials where athletes spend their time, giving recognition to athletes and coaches, highlighting your athletic partnerships when talking with prospective students, never mandating athletes to participate in prevention activities, and giving athletes tangible skills to keep their teammates from getting hurt or getting in trouble. Folsom and Curtis highlighted many of their successes at Connecticut College and answered questions about challenges, funding, and program assessment.
This resource from the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR) provides information on the steps to implement a SART as well as recommendations for and lessons learned about successful collaboration.
Although this document by Hallie Martyniuk through the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR) mostly emphasizes how a SART works under PREA, it is helpful for any institution trying to implement a well-organized and pervasive SART.
Click below to read the file.
Provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, this resource helps find a health care facility in your community.
This resource from the Office of Women’s Health provides information on the mental health effects of violence. Click here to read more.