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Thursday, August 6, 2020

Column: Women’s safety

Despite all the progress that has transpired throughout the years, women are still being blatantly mocked and discredited in front of the entire country. It’s no wonder that some men still think that it is okay to abuse and mistreat women, even on a college campus.

Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of men out there that are sexually assaulted and abused, but it’s abundantly clear that women stand a higher chance of being assaulted on campus than her male counterparts.

According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, 20 to 25 percent of college women are victims of forced sex during their time in college and more than 90 percent of them don’t report the assault.

Pierce has done relatively well cracking down on safety, keeping certain places on campus well lit and having the sheriff’s department roaming through campus constantly, but the Annual Security Report shows that it has not been fully eliminated, with one case of fondling in 2017.

There are a few ways that Pierce College and other college campuses can further move in a more conscious and safe direction. For instance, there could be women’s safety seminars or workshops available among the other workshops offered on campus.

There could be one that is specifically for women and what they should be looking for, how to handle a dangerous situation and how to prevent them. This could help educate the female population on campus and help them prevent possible sexual trauma.

Not only could we hold workshops for the women, but the men on campus could benefit as well. There could be workshops for men that address comfort lines, how to respect women and their space, and how to know when a woman wants it or she doesn’t.

Pierce could also add more lights to areas on campus that are still dark enough to make women susceptible to an attack. This in addition to increasing the patrols to the places that the security cars wouldn’t fit into.

According to RAINN, sexual violence can have psychological, emotional and physical effects on a survivor. These effects aren’t always easy to deal with, but with the right help and support they can be managed. Learning more can help you find the best form of care to begin the healing process.

Pierce could advertise that there are six free sessions of therapy offered in every semester for enrolled students. This could help people who have been assaulted, offering a safe place and person that they can feel comfortable with and confide in.

Even with that help it still may be hard for women to come forward, especially when people like Donald Trump and Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh can openly shut down their accusers and, in turn, the accusers are ridiculed and scorned.  

The example that young women are shown is a shameful one, and we must come together to make a zero tolerance for all campuses and make sure that the minds and bodies of these women are being protected.

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