UniteWomen.org member, Alexandra Miller and Paul Grindle wrote a piece for their University newspaper on possible solutions to the surge in reported sexual assaults on campus. If you have written a piece on sexual assault for your campus newspaper, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration in the UniteWomen.org blog.
Stony Brook is grappling with an increase in reported sexual assaults. To quote the Feb. 11, 2014 Statesman article, by Ashleigh Sherow, “…there were 17 forcible sexual offences in 2012 – five more than in 2011 and 10 more than in 2010.” Despite the large student body on campus, this number is unacceptable. With a population of roughly 16,000, that means .2 percent of students have reported a sexual assault, compared to New York State’s 304 reports for its 19.57 million people, resulting in .0016 percent of the population reporting sexual assaults. While college campuses generally have more sexual assaults than other places, New York State’s total of 304 assaults is part of an overall downward trend in the reported sexual assaults in the state, while Stony Brook’s total of 17 represents an upward trend. With these facts in mind, the question becomes how to combat the surge of Stony Brook’s increasing number of sexual assaults. Some solutions would be to hire more female police officers, re-orient a portion of the police force to focus on helping victims (as opposed to maintaining law and order), increase self-defense training and create bystander awareness workshops.