Imagine being in relationship, trusting a person so much only to be taken advantage of and forced into some sort of sexual activity. Imagine being friends with someone and deciding to hanging out, get something to eat after school, and your just talk when the friend starts to force you into performing a sexual act. Or imagine dating someone and maybe your not in the mood for anything sexual but being manipulated and forced to the point where you just give in and say yes but still feeling uncomfortable. Whether it’s being forced into sexual activity or forced into a sexual act or manipulated into any sort of sexual activity, etc are considered sexual assault. Most people don’t even realize that they are a victim of sexual assault while its happening till after. Sexual assault on college campuses are increasing every year and are not being handled as they should be. Colleges usually handle sexual assault cases privately through an administrative process, staffed by employees without the necessary training or experience instead of referring them to law enforcement.
A better way to insure the rights of all persons involved is to refer sexual assault crimes to local law enforcement for investigation and prosecution. This would benefit the schools themselves and the victim. Mediating these cases puts the school at risk of a liability. Allowing law enforcement to handle the case with standard procedures gives the victim a better chance of prosecuting the assaulter. Sexual assault happens because a person believes that they have the right to have sex or sexual contact with another person without that person’s consent. Or they themselves have been sexually assaulted in their past. Sexual Assault is an extremely serious societal issue and health issue. In the U.S. Sexual assault has been happening more and more. 11.2% of all students experience rape or sexual assault through physical force, violence, or incapacitation, on college campuses. A high amount of sexual assault victims don’t report the incident in fear of embarrassment, shame, being blamed, and people not believing them. Although, more and more victims have come forward and reported their incidences to authorities.
However, very few cases ever go to court, and even less, the number of people convicted for their actions. About one in five women and one in seventy men are sexually assaulted. There are ways of preventing sexual assaults from happening. Sexual assault on college campuses can be prevented by educating students and others on the subject of sexual assault and what it means and consent. The formal definition of sexual assault by Merriam-Webster is “illegal sexual contact that usually involves force upon a person without consent or is inflicted upon a person who is incapable of giving consent”. Sexual assault can include rape, groping, forced kissing, child sexual abuse, manipulation into sexual activity, or torturing the person in a sexual manner. Consent is permission given by the person. It’s important to know that consent can be revoked when ever you feel the need to, once you revoke your consent no one has your permission to do anything you don’t want or like. Another way of preventing sexual assault can be to increase security. Adding some security at night in the parking lots to maybe escort someone to their car or watching out for any suspicious activities. Most colleges have the option of a campus escort service. This is designed to help students feel safe when alone, especially at night going to a class or to your car.
This shouldn’t just got for students but for faculty too. Keeping some pepper spray and a whistle on hand with you would be another way of preventing a sexual assault from happening. A whistle is great for getting the attention of other people around and calling for help. While pepper spray comes in handy if you don’t necessarily have any self-defense skills, and is quick and effect to use. Also, taking a defense class for protection is a good idea too. If you don’t have pepper spray on hand this skill can come in handy when trying to protect your self. Or if you are witnessing someone being assaulted you can help them by using this skill before they get hurt. Recovering from being sexually assault can take a toll on one physically, emotionally, and mentally. These things make it harder for a victim to cope with what has happened to them and makes it harder for them to go on with their normal life. A person can physically have an injury in areas, decreased libido, muscle cramps and spasms, and a ruined sleep schedule. Emotionally this can cause anxiety, guilt, helplessness, paranoia, and outbursts of emotions. It can affect one mentally by causing depression, PTSD, the inability to focus, and denial.