Sexual Assaults Continue to Plague College Campuses – What Is Being Done?
Statistics continue to reveal disturbingly high numbers of sexual assaults taking place on college campuses.
According to Kathleen Hirsch’s, “Fraternities of Fear: Gang Rape, Male Bonding, and the Silencing of Women”, 1 in 4 women will be the victim of sexual assault sometime in her college career. Over a period of 6.9 months, 35.3 out of 1,000 female students fell victim to sexual assault, according to a study conducted by the 2000 Bureau of Justice Statistics report, “The Sexual Victimization of College Women”.
Schools are responsible for punishing offenders. However, an analysis by the Huffington Post discovered that not even a third of college student sexual assault perpetrators were kicked out of school. They might have been ordered to stay clear of the person they assaulted, but women are still forced to see their attacker on campus.
The Huffington Post also collected data revealing that 30% of guilty sexual assault criminals were expelled, 47% were suspended, 17% received educational sanctions, and 13% were placed on probation.
The Association for Student Conduct administration stresses that “legalistic language” such as “rape” or “guilty” should not be used in sexual assault policies or procedures of the school. Universities have also started using terms such as “nonconsensual sex” to replace “rape”.
Why are schools using language that falsely describes the crime? Are they more concerned with their reputation than the safety of female students? This seems to be the case. If a man forces himself onto a woman, it is sexual assault. The replacement language has enraged students and alumni across the country.
President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden launched the “It’s On Us” campaign September of last year. The White House sent out a release that states, “The campaign seeks to engage college students and all members of campus communities in preventing sexual assault in the first place”.
Hopefully, with Obama’s new campaign and the new confidence of victims to come forward, sexual assault on campus will start to dwindle, and perpetrators will be punished appropriately.