Awareness campaigns can help prevent sexual assault
Sexual assault has been a topic of national conversation recently, as the nation struggles to figure out the best way to confront sexual violence on and off college campuses.
In the fight to eliminate sexual assault on campus, universities across the U.S. have a powerful ally in the White House.
The White House’s “It’s On Us” campaign aims to raise awareness and prevent sexual assault on college campuses. The campaign gives students key tips about how to prevent sexual assault, including when to recognize a dangerous situation and how to ask for help.
The campaign asks participants to sign a pledge to prevent sexual assault and be an engaged bystander.
“It’s On Us” emphasizes a critical part in eliminating sexual assault — everybody can play a role in stopping it.
At the University of Idaho, University Housing decided to take part in the campaign and work toward eliminating sexual assault. ASUI also plans to join the effort after winter break by holding a pledge drive in the Idaho Commons.
Awareness campaigns and other training programs can give people the information and confidence they need to prevent sexual assault and make UI a safer university.
Awareness programs, such as “It’s On Us,” are an invaluable step to addressing a social problem that stretches throughout higher education in the U.S.
The efforts UI is making to address sexual assault on college campuses is great, but students shouldn’t wait for a program to address the problem of sexual assault on campus. Students need to take responsibility and speak out about sexual assault.
One in five women are sexually assaulted in college, according to the White House.
This statistic is not only disturbing, but it also solidifies the need for strong bystander intervention programs, such as Vandal Green Dot. Green Dot teaches students to become empowered bystanders capable of preventing sexual assault. Hopefully, campaigns such as “It’s On Us” will inspire students to receive further education on the subject through Green Dot.
It will take time to change a culture that has been so apathetic toward sexual assaults in the past, but with campaigns and increased awareness, a difference can be made. Awareness campaigns can lift the level of attention and — with the help of education programs — can lead to meaningful change on campus.
With the help of the “It’s On Us” campaign, UI can create an environment that helps prevent sexual assault, encourages victims to report crimes and removes the stigma surrounding victimhood.