In college, students should not have to worry about being sexually assaulted along with the stress of classes, but it’s happening more often than many realize.
According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, one in five women are sexually assaulted while in college and over 90 percent of victims who are on a college campus do not report sexual assault.
Sexual assault is not something to be quiet about and women who are thinking about going to parties or other social events should take precautions to protect themselves.
Buddy Up. Having a buddy system while attending a party or other event helps women stay safe. This person can make sure you will not get into a bad situation and can give you a ride home in case you are intoxicated and can not drive yourself.
Stay Alert & Minimize Alcohol Consumption. Be careful about how much you are drinking can help decrease your chances of being assaulted. According to Campus Safety Magazine, 43 percent of women who have consumed alcohol are sexually assaulted and 69 Percent of men who have consumed alcohol are the perpetrators.
Police Your Drinks. Not letting others get your drinks is another go way to protect yourself. If someone offers to get you a drink, they could put drugs into your drink. Additionally, try not to leave drinks unattended. If you suspect your drink may have been tampered with, don’t drink it.
Dress strategically. If you want to avoid unwanted attention, cover up. By wearing clothing that shows off your body you are more apt to attract more attention to yourself and you won’t be able to control who looks at you.This goes for both men and women.
Being aware of your surroundings. Watching other people around you and making sure you are not in an unsafe situation. Make sure that if you see others in a bad situations try to get them out of that situation and offer to take them home or if they can call someone to bring them home.
Be direct about your intentions and expectations. It’s important to give the individual you are having relations with clear consent to make sure you both are comfortable with the situation. If you do not give someone clear consent and the individual does not understand, leave the situation. Grand Rapids Community College offers a video explaining what consent is and isn’t.
The GRCC Title IX Coordinator Kimberly DeVires says that the things she emphasizes the most is to watch out for others and make sure you are giving and receiving clear consent.
“Making sure you watch out for others and try to intervene if you see something suspicious,” DeVires said. “If you see a friend or a stranger and they are with a guy and seem intoxicated try to intervene safely and remove them from the situation.”