As National Campus Safety Awareness Month approaches in September, Howard University will kick off a year-long campaign, “HU Stands” to promote sexual assault prevention on campus. Today, the Office of Title IX and several campus partners will host a campus event inviting students, faculty and staff to take the pledge to stand against interpersonal violence. The Howard University Student Association and the 1867 Club are campaign kick-off partners.
“We are committed to fostering and maintaining an academic and work environment that is free of sexual assault, sexual harassment, and other forms of interpersonal violence,” says Howard University President Wayne A. I. Frederick. “Sexual assault against our students will not be tolerated. It is our duty as a campus community to make Howard University a safe environment for everyone and that begins with education and prevention.”
An average of one in four undergraduate students experience sexual assault by the time they finish college, according to a nationwide survey conducted by the Office on Violence Against Women and the Bureau of Justice Statistics.
Last year, Howard University unveiled the Interim Title IX Policy on Prohibited Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment and Violence and Other Forms of Interpersonal Violence to the campus community. Interpersonal Violence includes a variety of types of violence covered under the Title IX law, such as sexual assault, sexual harassment, gender-based discrimination or harassment, dating and domestic violence, stalking and retaliation. If a Howard University student is the victim of sexual assault on or off campus, they have access to University resources that specialize in medical, counselling, advocacy, law enforcement, investigation, residential, and academic accommodations.
“Howard University takes the safety and well-being of our students very seriously and in keeping with our commitment to increase awareness and promote prevention, students will witness significant programming, trainings and opportunities for engagement from our Title IX office and the Interpersonal Violence Prevention Office this Fall,” says Candi N. Smiley, Howard University Title IX Coordinator. “Our Interpersonal Violence Prevention Office has already started hosting conversations with students in their residence halls and visiting student organizations. Ultimately, we want everyone to be fully aware of their rights and the resources available to them during their time at Howard.”
The goal of HU Stands is to engage all campus stakeholders and deliver a strong call to action for the HU community. For more information visit HUStands.howard.edu.