The Women’s Center has had a busy week, attending some great events for wonderful causes. First we attended the Clothesline Project, which we hope will be a continuing tradition on our campus. There were quite a few students, staff, faculty, and whole departments that participated.
The library even did a display that provides further information on the topic.
SAS may be doing it again in the Spring, so if you were unable to attend this semester, keep checking back so you can participate next semester.
After the Clothesline Project, the Women’s Center held its annual Breast Cancer walk around campus. There were goodies in the Women Center ( cupcakes and other treats) that were awaiting us after our walk.
We want to give a big thanks to everyone who showed support and came out participated!
Many of you heard about Emma Sulkowicz, and her art project / protest in regards to how her sexual assault charges were handled at Columbia University. She walked around campus carrying an XL mattress because her attacker was never removed from the campus, and soon others joined her to help carry the mattress (the burden of being sexual assaulted). If you have not heard about it, check it out here. It is really amazing what we as people can do when we stand together, and support one another.
This is why Carrying the Weight Together is so amazing! On Oct. 29th, those who are apart of college community are encouraged to grab a mattress and stand together in an effort to show support for those who have experienced sexual assault and domestic violence.
We had another great round table this Tuesday, where we had Sexual Assault Services (SAS) come and talk with us about the Red Flag Campaign, and the services that are provided throughout the college.
People had some great questions about consent, and raised some great points about how culturally there is a great impact on how we interact with one another sexually. There was a lot of focus on how “no” is not usually the stopping point, but the beginning of a negotiation, and how problematic that becomes, especially when people get worn down, and feel as though there is no other option.
All of these questions and topics were answered and further clarified by the wonderful people who came to visit from SAS. They did a great job of hosting our round table, and I know I walked away with more knowledge under my belt.
One of the biggest things I took away from this round table, is how fortunate we all are to have the support network created by SAS. Most institutions do not go to the lengths that these folks do in order to ensure that people get the help they need.
So here are some of things these amazing people do:
Provide support whether you are in a situation yourself, or trying to be there for family or friends who are in abusive relationships, sexual assaults, stalking
All services are confidential
Always on call ( cell #, so you can text as well)
They can meet off-campus
They will go to appointments, court, exams, etc.
They provide support when people need it the most, and are helping to ensure that survivors are aware of all of their options. We are quite fortunate to have this level of involvement, and people who invest so much time to make sure that survivors get help, and know that they are not alone.
SAS is under the NOVA Cares services here at NOVA. Here is there email: firstname.lastname@example.org and phone: 703-338-0834
The internet is buzzing about California passing the Affirmative Consent Law. There are high emotions on either side, some feeling as though this is long overdue, while others feel as though the government is overstepping.
In California, the Senator Kevin de Leon introduced the Affirmative Consent Law that was recently passed by Governor Jerry Brown. This law is applicable to any higher education institution that receives state funding. The law tries to better outline what kind of protocols that should be in place, as well as what programs and support need to be in place for survivors of sexual violence.
I am curious to see the effectiveness of this bill, and what, if anything happens to institutions who do not comply with this law. There is a need for more resources available for survivors, and it is important to have a support network, hopefully this law provides the push needed to get campuses into action and providing these much needed spaces.
It will be interesting to see how other states react to this, especially states with institutions that have higher rates of sexual violence.
There is a lot of back and forth going on about what the law is and isn’t, here is a link Affirmative Consent , where you can take a look at the points, and what the campuses will have to do in order to comply.
One thing I have noticed in looking through comments, is that people are complaining that this places too much responsibility on the alleged attacker. In most cases the responsibility is on the victim of an attack, where there is the need to justify what they were doing, how much they were drinking, their sexual history, did they do anything to maybe give the faintest whiff of interest, etc. I think it is alright if there is more responsibility placed on the person being accused, instead of someone trying justify why it was horrible for them to be attacked.