Though he didn’t mention it in the State of the Union, last week Obama issued a Presidential Memorandum, establishing a new task force to address the issue of rape and sexual assault on college campuses. Coinciding with this announcement, the White House Council on Women and Girls released a report with updated statistics on this issue. And, for another take on the task force, read this.
***Trigger Warning for Statistics/Discussion of Rape & Sexual Assault***
Some of the numbers:
1 in 5 women is sexually assaulted while in college
12% of these women report their assaults to law enforcement
63% of college men who admitted to attempting or committing rape had multiple offenses. Each of these men committed an average of 6 rapes.
We’ve all seen news stories about Title IX violations on college campuses, including in our tri-college community. This is a problem that people like to dismiss as being limited to a few outspoken survivors; however, statistics like these clearly show that more than just a small group of students are sexually assaulted while in college.
And, as much as we might like to believe it is, Haverford isn’t somehow magically exempt from this reality because we happen to have an honor code. This is an issue that impacts a significant number of students, and it’s important that the whole community recognize that in order for any widespread change to happen.