Guardian Self Defense and Security Blog

College Campus Sexual Assaults

"A 22 year-old woman living on a college campus — or anywhere for that matter— I’ve heard the horror stories. I know that a female walking alone at night is a target. Many women — and men for that matter — end up in situations they never expected. I know this, and yet, more often than I care to admit, I find myself walking the ill lit paths of Julia Davis Park long after the park officially has closed. And I’m not alone. On any given night I’m joined by half a dozen lone women stumbling, often under the influence of alcohol, towards home." Read the whole story HERE. "Yet there is a provable fallacy to this kind of thought. According to a National Crime Victimization Survey, there is an average of 207,754 sexual assaults every year in the United States. That breaks down to roughly one sexual assault every two minutes. Estimates from a report released by the Department of Justice (DOJ) say that on the average college campus 20 to 25 percent of female attendees will experience some sort of sexual assault during their college career. Take a minute and think about the people you know. Chances are– and statistics confirm– that you know someone who has been the victim of an assault. So why do we take the risk? While everyone needs to be careful, on this campus there is one group at higher risk of sexual assault than any other. The DOJ conducted a recent survey, which told us that of 84 percent female college students who were victims of an assault reported that it happened during their first four semesters. Freshmen and sophomore women. The same study showed that during the months of September, October and November sexual assaults on college campuses happen with nearly double the frequency of the other months. As women, we’ve been raised with the idea that to be successful we must be strong, capable and independent. For many, college is the first time we have to assert that independence. And in a society that glamorizes the party lifestyle, YOLO and free flow alcohol this can get dangerously out of control. The DOJ estimates that 9 out of 10 women assaulted on college campuses know their attacker. So while you might never forget about those shadows lurking in the dark, you are far more likely to be assaulted by someone you met at last week’s party or that cute friend you agreed to catch up with at the bar. So be safe out there. Guys don’t let your girl-friends wander off alone. No matter how much she insists she’s OK. And girls, do the same; for both your friends and yourself. I’m not foolish enough to think that I’ll ever convince you not to go out and party — I was 19 just a few years ago– but be empowered to take of yourself. Now you know the statistics. Don’t become one."
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