Sexual Assault: What can you do?
Some of the latest statistics indicate that 1 in 4 women experience sexual assault while in college. This is a relatively large percentage of cases reported. You can imagine how many sexual assaults are unreported. The number of sexual assault cases are becoming more publicized on college campuses. Because of these high numbers, colleges have implemented a number of programs to prevent sexual assault.
Believe it or not, we can prevent some of these situations from occurring. We can do so by becoming an active bystander. Prevention Awareness Uniting Students with Empowerment (PAUSE) is a CSULB program aimed at encouraging students to intervene to prevent sexual assault from taking place.
Many times students do not intervene because they are unsure what to do or expect someone else to intervene; hence, your top priority should be your safety. There are three different methods students can perform: direct, delegate, and distract. These are known as the 3 D’s.
Direct: Encourages students to directly communicate with all parties involved. Let’s say you see a guy put a pill in a girls drink, you can exercise the direct method by saying, “Hey, I just saw you put something in her drink!”
Delegate: Assign tasks to parties involved and other bystanders as well. For example, you see a guy getting aggressively intimate with an obviously drunk girl at a bar. You can tell the bouncer to get him away from her. Or let’s say you are at a party and your friend is passed out and there is vomit on the ground next to her. You would call 9-1-1 to get her medical help right away.
Distract: You can choose to either distract the perpetrator or the potential victim. An example would be that you are at a party and your friend is being encouraged to drink shot after shot by a guy you know has been into her for a while. However, your friend has told you she doesn’t feel the same way but thinks they can be friends. You decide to distract the situation by grabbing your friend away and saying that you need her to go with you to another party down the street.
We can all come together to make campus safe for everyone just by speaking up, doing something, or even calling for medical/police assistance. If someone was trying to harm someone we knew, we would want someone…anyone to intervene and help them. And all its takes is recognizing there’s a problem and taking action.