As colleges and universities work to prevent and respond to sexual violence on campus, limited data are available that speak to what these efforts look like on a national level. Culture of Respect’s signature program—the Collective—offers a glimpse into this picture with data on what the 52-institution cohort is doing to support student survivors, establish clear policies, institute comprehensive prevention programming, collect and disclose data, work with diverse campus stakeholders, and engage in ongoing self-assessment. This report chronicles the myriad ways in which Collective institutions are meeting federal guidelines from the Clery Act and Title IX guidance, and to what extent they are implementing practices and programs recommended by Culture of Respect and other experts in the field. The strengths and opportunities apparent in each of these areas reflect trends relevant to the field of higher education, as institutions continue to improve and expand their efforts to address campus sexual violence.
Over the past week, leaders and allies in the movement to end campus sexual violence have grappled with the recent announcement that the Department of Education will reexamine its approach to Title IX enforcement. Though this threat to Title IX protections for students is disheartening, we know it has always been in the hands of student activists, college presidents, campus employees, community-based organizations, and everyday citizens to hold educational institutions accountable to taking action to prevent and respond to sexual violence.
Culture of Respect, a NASPA initiative dedicated to working with colleges and universities to strengthen efforts to address sexual violence, is proud to stand alongside many of the leaders who work tirelessly to improve student safety on campus. Today, Culture of Respect is releasing a report which can be an important tool for those committed to this issue: Institutional Responses to Sexual Violence provides a snapshot of what campuses across the country are doing to address violence. With self-reported survey data collected from 35 institutions participating in the Culture of Respect Collective, the report chronicles area of strength and opportunity in campus sexual violence prevention and response.
As college presidents, administrators and activists look towards next steps in building off the work of the past years, this Culture of Respect report provides some reminders of what we know about the movement to end sexual violence campus:
- College and universities have made great strides. The totality of what Collective institutions have done to address violence is truly impressive: implementing multidose prevention for incoming students; conducting climate surveys and sharing the data widely; employing staff with diverse skill sets to provide trauma-informed response to survivors; and much more. This commitment and effort demonstrated by the responding institutions tell us “yes, it can be done.”
- There is still more to be done. This work is an ongoing process – we can be never finished preventing violence. The areas of opportunity identified in this report can be helpful for institutions across the country as they consider next steps in their efforts to support survivors and engage in strategic prevention initiatives.
- This movement is powerful. It is not just the accomplishments detailed in the report itself that are impactful, but the commitment of institutions who dedicated their time, money, person-power, and institutional data to this project. Their willingness to engage in self-assessment and self-improvement is in no short order due to the steadfast work of activists who have carried this movement forward.
Download the full report today and bring it to decision-makers on your campus. Hopefully it can start a conversation about what’s next in your institution’s efforts to end violence on campus.
The Culture of Respect Collective is a campus mobilization program that guides institutional stakeholders through a step-by-step strategic assessment and planning process to improve campus sexual violence prevention and response. The program is grounded in a comprehensive self-assessment, and includes collaboration with peers across the nation, technical assistance from Culture of Respect staff, and ongoing professional development. The 2017 cohort includes more than 50 institutions of higher education. Applications for the 2018 cohort will open later this month. Fill out this brief survey to join the waiting list and we will keep you updated when the application is open.