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Emmanuel Launches Title IX Webpage to Address Sexual Misconduct

Last week Emmanuel announced, via a Portal post, that its Title IX compliance web page has been launched to serve as a resource for the Emmanuel community.

Since its inception in 1972 Title IX has been used to address discrimination based on sex/gender primarily in education and athletic programs across the country.  However, it is not just about athletics. Title IX considers sexual harassment as a form of sex/gender discrimination and it requires that all incidents of sexual harassment be viewed as discrimination and be investigated.

Emmanuel’s Title IX page also features a video with faculty, staff and students promoting Emmanuel’s “Speak Up” campaign.  “Speak Up” is an education and prevention campaign designed to remind students, faculty, and staff of Emmanuel College’s commitment to fostering an environment free from discrimination and harassment, including sexual harassment and assault.

The webpage offers insight on policies, legal issues for the accused and the victim, where to go for help and a “Risk Reduction Tips” section.

This webpage includes a list of staff contacts, on campus resources such as the counseling center and off campus resources such as phone numbers for the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC) and national hotline for sexual assault. Also listed on the webpage are links to services such as the RAD  self-defense program and sexual harassment and discrimination training.

In September of this year, the White House launched a campaign aimed at ending sexual assaults on college campuses. Since then many colleges across the country have been forced to reexamine their sexual assault policies, and the Title IX webpage seems to be a result of this campaign.

Dakota Roundtree-Swain ’16 feels that establishing this webpage was a step in the right direction for Emmanuel.

“With the prevalence of rape and sexual assault on college campuses, the fact that Emmanuel didn’t already have this page up and running is astounding. But now that they do, I think it’s a great step in preventing these terrible circumstances from occurring,” says Roundtree-Swain.

Dr. Joe Onofrietti, Dean of students, is a member of EC’s sexual assault response team (SART). He hopes that the webpage will serve to educate students at Emmanuel.

“I hope that the Title IX webpage helps students feel supported and know where to go for support and resources. We want to support you, and we don’t want people to feel ashamed if ever involved in a sexual misconduct situation,” says Dr. Onofrietti.

At an institution where there seems to be harsher consequences for plagiarism than for sexual misconduct, the Title IX webpage is a start for the work in progress that is Emmanuel’s sexual harassment/misconduct policy.

In response to the administration’s handling of a potential sexual misconduct investigation, Roundtree-Swain says, “I want to feel confident about it but until I see proof that they have handled these issues adequately, I can’t say I’m confident. In a perfect world, we wouldn’t need a course to teach people how not to get raped (RAD) and instead, we would have a course teaching students not to rape. But any steps are good steps at this time.”

 

Kyla Burke is a staff writer and editor of The Week’s End. Follow her on Twitter at @kkb_ .

Posted by on December 8, 2014. Filed under Around Campus,Updates. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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