Sexual Assault on College Campuses
Sexual assault in tertiary institutions is becoming a common problemas thousands of girls are sexually assaulted on college campusesacross the US each year. It is the worst fear of every student tobecome part of the thousands of the victims. While reports are notacted upon, people take them lightly as statistics hence fail torealize the scope of the problem. Furthermore, cases reported arehandled gently while some are never reported at all. Although I haveheard of sexual assault cases in other universities, it had not beena major issue on my campus. However, for the past few months, therehas been reported incidences of sexual and the trend appears toincrease. The primary concern is that the university has not donemuch to curb the vice. As a matter of the case, this paper willassess the problem of sexual assault in campus and recommendsolutions for the problem.
Sexual assault is an over-all term that defines a broad range offorced unwelcome sexual activity, comprising rape, groping, kissing,as well as exhibitionism. The Victims of this form of crime may becompelled into the acts through vocal or non-verbal intimidations orthe use of a substance, like drugs and alcohol. Sexual assault is notonly limited to physical contact, as some acts such as exhibitionismand voyeurism are still recognized as unwanted sexual attention(Miller 82). College environment creates a setting for many studentsto venture in intimate relationships with casual or seriousrelationships. Within the boundaries of these relationships,inexperienced partners may not be well equipped with proper tools andknowledge to identify the worrying habits. The earliest presentationsof abuse are not always physical. There are several steps the collegeshould take to prevent the cases of sexual assault on campus. Forinstance, the college should clearly define sexual assault andstalking, and provide a transparent structure about the variousoptions the students have in reporting and handling the charges. Thecollege should also realize that people of color and LGBT scholarsmay have exceptional needs, and thus provide additional resources andfacilities for them. These small measures will encourage the studentsto participate in rape education prevention not only on campus butalso outside the campus. Some universities and colleges haveinstituted these measures in USA, and it shows a positive sign. Inresponse to debates on rape campus crisis, more learning institutionsare taking a more practical approach, moving away from theout-of-date victim-blaming approach (Miller 85).
The college should provide safe avenues for reporting sexual assaultcases, and protection of the victims. One thing that encourages theoccurrence of assault incidences is the failure to report. Caseswhich are not reported cannot be acted upon and go unpunished. Manyvictims fail to bring their cases to the attention of the authoritybecause there are no clear and safe structures for doing so. Forexample, a single office should be charged with the oversight andcoordination of the numerous responsibilities associated with sexualassaults. The office should be established with sufficient andappropriate resources. The reporting of sexual assault is essentialfor accurate record keeping as well as preventing a repeat of thesame. The guidelines for reporting should also be clear andcategorical. The administration should handle the cases with privacyto protect the identity of the victim. This measure will reduce thestigma associated with rape and will encourage reporting of newhappenings.
An essential element of prevention is the education of students aboutsexual assault and rape culture. The college should takeresponsibility for providing this education to its students. Mosteducation and preventions programs in the past have targeted women,who are the most likely victims of sexual assault. However, thecampus should broaden the perspective of the education to includemen, who are the main perpetrators of the crime. Training andeducation programs targeting men have a high potential of changingthe campus culture regarding sexual crimes of all forms. Mostsuccessful practices are intervention and prevention programs aimedat all-male college groups, which explore what men do individuallyand communally to prevent sexual assaults. The program should also beable to identify intervention strategies available for bystanders,such as roommates and friends, when a male peer appears to be on theverge of carrying out a possibly sexual crime. Although students arethe primary focus, the college assault policy should ultimatelyencompass all campus constituents. Most rape victims recognize theirassaulters. According to the Rape, Abuse, and Incest NationalNetwork, approximately two out of three sexual assault cases areperpetrated by a person that the victims know, and about 38 percentof rapes are carried out by an acquaintance or a friend of the victim(Miller 58). In most cases, the assailants give off warning signsthat go unnoticed by the people around them, which encourages them togo on and on. Tackling the sexual assault culture requires changingthe way we relate to one another, and the college should start tounderstand this.
Sexual assault in tertiary schools is becoming a common problem asthousands of girls are sexually assaulted on college campuses acrossthe US each year. It is the worst fear of every student to becomepart of the thousands of the victims, and that is why the collegeshould be awakened to see the issue as an urgent problem that needsto be addressed. One thing that encourages the occurrence of assaultincidences is the failure to report. As a result, the college shouldcreate structures for tackling sex assault cases. The college shouldalso take responsibility of providing education to its students, aswell as institute intervention and prevention programs. Most victimsknow their assailants but are not able to read the warning signsearlier. Tackling the issue of sexual assault fundamentally requiresthat we change the way we relate to one another, and the collegeshould start to understand this.
Miller,Alexis. "Campus Sexual Assault Prevention: Not Just OurIssue." Election2016. HIS/HER/HIRSTORY: a symposium of projects offeringintersectional analyses. November 8, 2016..2017.
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