‘SaVE’ would add to sexual violence protection at UConn
Published: Thursday, March 7, 2013
Updated: Thursday, March 7, 2013 00:03
Deliberations are taking place in the U.S. Senate about the proposed Campus Sexual Violence Act (SaVE), which puts forward a new set of standards for the handling of sexual misconduct on college campuses across the U.S. If passed, it will require the disclosure of incidents of domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking in annual campus crime reports. However, a number of strategies targeting sexual violence are already in place at UConn.
With the passing of SaVE, all colleges and universities will be required to provide students and employees access to various sources such as assistance from authorities, changes to hostile academic or work environments and restraining orders. UConn already provides a large list of resources and organizations ready to assist students and employees who have faced incidents of sexual violence on campus. The university currently provides an annual Security and Fire Safety reports that feature resources that students and employees can turn to in the event of sexual violence. Resources include phone numbers for mental health services, information on how to file a report and security awareness programs.
In addition to the protections currently in existence at UConn, SaVE will guarantee that the minimum coverage of procedures will be fair and prompt and will allow for a impartial investigation, carried out by trained officials.
“I think the act will serve in an effective way to increase awareness, as well as a higher sense of security for women,” said Lisa Somma, an 8th-semester human development and family studies major. “Besides reported cases, I feel that there are many unreported cases of stalking, sexual violence, et cetera, that women face in their college years, and it’s not fair for them to feel uncomfortable while attending college.”
According to the 2011 Security Report, reported forcible sexual incidents decreased slightly compared to the previous year. In 2010 there were 12 incidents reported, in contrast to 2011, in which only eight incidents were reported.
“Having this law in place it will serve as another reference we can go back to in the event of a similar occurrence [sexual violence],” said Jin Lin, a 6th-semester computer science major.
Originally called the Campus Sexual Violence Elimination Act, SaVE was authored by Sen. Bob Casey (D-Penn.) and Rep. Caroline Malony (D-N.Y.) in 2010. Many colleges and universities currently require that action be taken in reported cases of sexual violence, but do not have a prevention policy in place.
“In a big university like UConn there is already a lot of awareness on campus safety,” said Kaitlyn Stanton, a 6th-semester resource economics major. “It can’t hurt to have this act in place, and I think it will greatly benefit our campus.”