SA: Focus on assault prevention

By Northern Star Editorial Board

The Student Association’s Week of Action, a part of the It’s On Us campaign to stop campus sexual assault, featured events about self-defense and post-sexual assault resources, but it didn’t cover consent and male education enough.

SA members will discuss their plans for the future as part of a winter retreat, and the discussion will include the It’s On Us campaign. At the retreat, the SA must push for more education about consent and for men in next semester’s It’s On Us programs.

The Week of Action kicked off Nov. 17 with Rape Aggression Defense Training, a self-defense course for women. Tuesday’s What to Do, Who to Call focused on policy education for sexual assault, while Wednesday’s Survivors Find Freedom allowed sexual assault survivors to share their stories. The final event on Friday was a self-defense and bystander education workshop.

The event that focused the most on males was the Thursday screening of “Red-Blooded Men” with media studies professor Laura Vazquez. The documentary explores college through the position of men while diving into masculinity, femininity and the increase of sexual assault across the nation, according to its YouTube description.

SA President Joe Frascello and Vice President Raquel Chavez hosted a discussion Nov. 3 to brainstorm for the Week of Action with community, city and student leaders. One of the ideas brought up at the discussion was spreading education by visiting fraternity houses and speaking to members during their chapter meetings. Frascello said he’s working on getting speakers for these discussions, which he said is the No. 1 priority for next semester.

The SA should continue these proactive measures with similar educational events and reach out to male communities — having leaders share with the university what they’ve learned.

As this semester concludes, Frascello said the SA will continue to encourage students to sign the It’s On Us pledge. Signing the pledge is to “promise not to be a bystander to the problem, but to be a part of the solution,” according to its website.