Grant to fund sexual assault awareness
Student Services joins forces with others
Published: Friday, September 27, 2013
Updated: Thursday, September 26, 2013 16:09
The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) awarded a $35,000 grant to ASU’s Office of Student Services to promote awareness and prevention of violence and sexual assault.
“Unfortunately, programs such as these are needed at all universities,” Director of Student Services Audrey Wilson said. “We need to get the message out that victims are not to blame for what happened and they do not need to remain silent. We also want our students to know that the faculty, staff of ASU are here to help.”
Wilson will oversee the spending of the grant once the funds become available on Oct. 1. Student Services plans to work with the Health Clinic and Counseling Services, Center for Student Involvement, University Police, and Housing to develop programs to inform the ASU community about sexual assault, domestic violence and stalking. Programs will also focus on bystander intervention, self-defense and where to go for help if needed.
“I think it’s good that the university has an opportunity to establish programs against sexual assault and even though people think they are ineffective, every bit counts in the long run,” transfer student Peyton LaBauve said.
The grant is a part of the U.S. DOJ Office on Violence Against Women and their grants to Reduce Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence and Stalking on Campus program. The grant funds two years of training full-time staff on ways to address sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking. After attending the various training sessions, conferences and seminars, staff members will implement programs on campus to address the needs of the students.
Wilson said Student Services initially applied for a $300,000 grant that would help develop and strengthen victim services, hire additional full-time and student staff members and purchase software to manage cases. Winning this grant positions ASU to better apply for the larger grant in the future so that Student Services could partner with off-campus organizations such as the Concho Valley Rape Crisis Center, New Bridge Family Shelter and the San Angelo Police Department.
“The larger grant would also enable ASU to create a large-scale impact by enabling us to address sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking beyond the campus level,” Wilson said, “to not only provide the information regarding these topics, but develop policies and protocols on how to address students in these situations.”