UWPD response to Sexual Assault is NOT GOOD ENOUGH!

Via my friend Kaitlee, who is also a UW Student:

“Hello everyone. Today I opened my uw email account and found yet ANOTHER “timely warning” from the UWPD. This time, however, we have received notice of a sexual assault. After their typical description of the crime, the UWPD listed the following as preventative measures:

– Avoid confrontations whenever possible.
– Remove yourself from potentially dangerous situations as soon as possible.
– Avoid consuming alcohol as it will reduce your ability to perceive and react
to dangerous situations
– Call 911 when you believe a confrontation is escalating.

I found this to be an outrageously irresponsible and ineffective response to this situation. I thus decided to hit the reply button. I said:

How about a preventative measure teaching men not to assault women? why is it
the victim’s responsibility to avoid assault? women as well as men should be
free to behave however they feel comfortable. while preventative measures are
good ideas, it is the culture of misogyny that needs to be addressed, and I
would like to see UWPD implement some kind of program that could at least teach
the men (and women) of our university about the importance of respecting the
rights of others. that’s the great thing about a university — we have our own
little culture that we can mold independent of the greater culture. please
consider these thoughts, and I am absolutely certain that there are more than
enough individuals on campus who would be more than willing to help in this kind
of project (myself included), even if it was volunteer work (or perhaps we could
get fieldwork/independent study credit).

sincerely concerned,
kaitlee v.

perhaps not the most eloquent or even most thought-out response, but an important response nonetheless. I invite all of you to do the same. While all assault is awful and I hate the vast numbers of emails we get about them, sexual assault, to me, no matter who the victim(s) is/are or who the perpetrator(s) is/are, should not be tolerated under any circumstances.

so, please, open up your uw email, find that email, and reply with your concerns! I know many of you were/are surely as deeply disappointed as I am.”

I want to add that I’m also pretty upset that they didn’t disclose which fraternity this happened at – don’t we have the right to know that sort of thing, so we know where not to go in the future?


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