Government orders inquiry over violence against women at universities

September 10, 2015 Comments Off on Government orders inquiry over violence against women at universities

Government orders inquiry over violence against women at universities

Heads ordered to draw up code of practice over concerns male undergraduates are subjecting women to unwanted sexual advances

Press Association

Sunday 6 September 2015

The government has ordered an inquiry into reducing violence against women at universities over concerns “lad culture” is endangering female students.

University heads have been ordered to lead a taskforce to look into the problem and draw up a code of practice “to bring about cultural change”.

The business secretary, Sajid Javid, who ordered the review, said: “Nobody should be put off going to university because of fears about their safety. If my children choose that path, I would expect my daughter to be as safe as my son on any campus in this country.

“This taskforce will ensure that universities have a plan to stamp out violence against women and provide a safe environment for all their students. We do not tolerate this behaviour in any part of society and I’m not prepared to let it take place on university campuses unchecked.”….

Research carried out by the National Union of Students last year revealed that a quarter of students had been groped or subjected to inappropriate touching. Two-thirds of the 2,000 students polled said they had seen that others had to put up with unwanted sexual comments.

The taskforce will also look at how complaints can be better handled, and will work with crime prevention officers to tackle the problem. Universities could be rated on how well they perform using a certification scheme that would give the stamp of approval to institutions which do most to tackle sexism and violence against women….. http://www.theguardian.com/education/2015/sep/06/government-inquiry-violence-against-women-at-universities

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Sexual abuse allegations shut down football season at New Jersey school, Hidden Marks: A study of women students’ experiences of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault

October 13, 2014 Comments Off on Sexual abuse allegations shut down football season at New Jersey school, Hidden Marks: A study of women students’ experiences of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault

– Sexual abuse allegations shut down football season at New Jersey school
– Seven Sayreville football players suspended amid abuse scandal at New Jersey school
– Campus nightmare: female students on the rise of sexual harassment
– Hidden Marks
A study of women students’ experiences of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault
– NUS research reveals one in four students suffer unwelcome sexual advances

Sexual abuse allegations shut down football season at New Jersey school
October 10, 2014, by CNN Wire
SAYREVILLE, N.J. — The crunching sound of football cleats on hallway floors became the drone of dread for freshman at a New Jersey high school. As they marched into the locker room, an ugly hazing ritual allegedly awaited them.

Upperclassmen howled as they flipped off the lights then sexually abused their younger classmates at Sayreville High School, parents and players say.
Authorities are investigating, and the school’s superintendent has canceled the successful team’s football season.
The coach and officials won’t comment on details of the abuse, but it may have gone on for a year. A Sports Illustrated article indicated that it likely did not involve intercourse.

“There were incidents of harassment, intimidation that took place on a pervasive level, in which the players knew, tolerated and in general accepted,” says Superintendent Richard Labbe….
http://myfox8.com/2014/10/10/sexual-abuse-allegations-shut-down-football-season-at-new-jersey-school/

Seven Sayreville football players suspended amid abuse scandal at New Jersey school
The announcement came an hour before a vigil was to be held in town for the victims of the alleged hazing ritual. BY Bill Price NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Sunday, October 12, 2014

The seven Sayreville football players arrested over the weekend have been suspended from school, Jonathan Busch, the lawyer for the school board said in a statement, according to The Home News Tribune.
“While we are legally restricted from speaking about individual students, it would be fair to say that any student arrested in connection with the matter involving the football program is suspended from Sayreville War Memorial High School, and we are in the process of arranging for an alternative education pending further investigation,” Busch said in the statement.
The announcement came an hour before a vigil was to be held in town for the victims of the alleged hazing ritual….

A joint statement from county prosecutor Andrew C. Carey and Sayreville Police Chief John Zebrowski on Saturday said “seven juveniles have been charged with juvenile delinquency arising from the attacks upon four victims in four separate incidents at Sayreville War Memorial High School.”
The statement said “three of the juveniles were charged with aggravated sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual contact, conspiracy to commit aggravated criminal sexual contact, criminal restraint and hazing for engaging in an act of sexual penetration upon one of the juvenile victims.”….
http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/high-school/sayreville-suspended-school-report-article-1.1971879

Campus nightmare: female students on the rise of sexual harassment
Photographed in their beds, shamed on social media – and, for some female students, that’s just the beginning. So what are British universities doing about sexual harassment and assaults?
Sally Williams The Guardian, Friday 10 October 2014

….The extent of sexual assaults on British campuses emerged four years ago when the NUS published Hidden Marks: A Study Of Women Students’ Experiences Of Harassment, Stalking, Violence And Sexual Assault. One in seven respondents had experienced some form of serious physical or sexual assault, the report stated, and more than two-thirds had experienced some kind of verbal or nonverbal harassment in or around university. (The latest NUS survey revealed that 37% of women and 12% of men who responded said they had faced unwelcome sexual advances.) Being groped, having someone put their hand up your skirt at a club and sexual comments were so ubiquitous, the NUS concluded, they were almost a fact of life.

A report last year, by the Ministry of Justice, the Home Office and the Office for National Statistics, stated that female students in full-time education are at higher risk of sexual violence than the general female population. A particularly hazardous time, experts believe, is freshers’ week, when newcomers are invited to a raft of social events. “They are extremely vulnerable,” says Dr Alison Phipps, director of gender studies at Sussex University and coauthor of That’s What She Said, a 2013 report on women students’ experience in higher education. “Some of them are away from home for the first time, are trying to make friends and don’t know the campus, don’t know the city.”….
http://www.theguardian.com/education/2014/oct/11/campus-nightmare-female-students-rise-sexual-harassment

Hidden Marks
A study of women students’ experiences of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault

Foreword
Welcome to Hidden Marks, the first ever nationwide report into women students’ experience of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault. We decided to undertake this research because women aged 16–24 have a higher risk of experiencing domestic violence, but there appeared to be little awareness of this amongst students. We wanted to find out from women students themselves about their experiences. We wanted to understand what was happening on campus, in halls of residences, and in
students’ unions, and we wanted to hear how women students felt about it.
In this report we provide a snapshot of the harassment and violence that a national sample of women students have faced whilst they have been at their current institution. The picture that we have revealed is disturbing. 14 per cent have experienced serious physical or sexual assault. 68 per cent have been subject to verbal or physical sexual harassment. Nearly one in four has experienced unwanted sexual contact.
http://www.nus.org.uk/Global/NUS_hidden_marks_report_2nd_edition_web.pdf

NUS research reveals one in four students suffer unwelcome sexual advances

Monday 15 September 2014
NUS President, Toni Pearce today called on UK universities to join NUS in its work on tackling lad culture on UK campuses. The call comes as new research reveals that one in four students (26 per cent) have suffered unwelcome sexual advances, defined as inappropriate touching and groping.

More than a third of women students (37 per cent) said they had faced unwelcome sexual advances.
In the survey of over 2,000 men and women students almost one third of respondents said they endure unwanted sexual comments about their body (12 per cent of men, 37 per cent of women).
Two thirds of respondents said they have seen students put up with unwanted sexual comments, with just under one third bearing witness to verbal harassment based on a student’s gender.

75 per cent of students are aware of online communities such as ‘Unilad’ and ‘Lad Bible’ with almost two thirds of women students (63 per cent) agreeing that these contribute to an unfair representation of women…. http://www.nus.org.uk/en/news/nus-research-reveals-one-in-four-students-suffer-unwelcome-sexual-advances/

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