April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, which should serve as a reminder that we have a year-round duty to strive to eradicate these heinous occurrences that erode the foundations of our community. Wesleyan has been working with groups on and off campus to be better prepared to prevent sexual assault and to deal with its aftermath. We have partnered with Connecticut Sexual Assault Crisis Services (CONNSACS), and that organization’s website has a wealth of educational material to complement what you can find on the Wesleyan site. April should remind all faculty and staff to sign up for the ongoing Title VII/Title IX 2-hour workshops.
We’re fortunate that student activism around the issue is both courageous and thoughtful. The academic year began with the Memory Quilt and a visit by the Senator Blumenthal group looking into how we can better respond to sexual violence. As the semester draws to a close, there will be a screening of The Hunting Ground on April 28 in Goldsmith Family Cinema at 8 p.m. Students will also be holding a Take Back the Night event on April 23.
We have four standing Title IX committees – comprised of students, staff, and faculty from across the campus – working with the greater Connecticut advocacy community on continuously improving our policies and educational practices as well as the efficacy of our interventions. If we are to transform our culture, here and around the world, we must all do our parts by educating ourselves on the myths and realities of sexual violence.