Rape and other Sexual Violence (SV) Prevention
Sexual Violence (SV) refers to sexual activity where consent is not obtained or freely given. Anyone can experience SV, but most victims are female. The person responsible for the violence is typically male and is usually someone known to the victim. The person can be, but is not limited to, a friend, coworker, neighbor, or family member.
There are many types of SV. Not all include physical contact between the victim and the perpetrator (person who harms someone else) – for example, sexual harassment, threats, and peeping. Other SV, including unwanted touching and rape, includes physical contact. www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention
In order to address complex behaviors with multiple causes, such as rape and other sexual violence, we have to address many factors, including:
- Individual attitudes and behaviors
- Group attitudes and behaviors
- Institutional cultures, rules and regulations
- Community factors
- Public policy
The Importance of Consent
Consent for any sexual activity is the centerpiece for preventing sexual coercion and unwanted sexual behavior. Our definition of consent is... Affirmative consent is a knowing, voluntary, and mutual decision among all participants to engage in sexual activity. Consent can be given by words or actions, as long as those words or actions create clear permission regarding willingness to engage in the sexual activity. Silence or lack of resistance, in and of itself, does not demonstrate consent. The definition of consent does not vary based upon a participant's sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.
- Consent to any sexual act or prior consensual sexual activity between or with any party does not necessarily constitute consent to any other sexual act.
- Consent is required regardless of whether the person initiating the act is under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.
- Consent may be initially given but withdrawn at any time.
- Consent cannot be given when a person is incapacitated, which occurs when an individual lacks the ability to knowingly choose to participate in sexual activity. Incapacitation may be caused by the lack of consciousness or being asleep, being involuntarily restrained, or if an individual otherwise cannot consent. Depending on the degree of intoxication, someone who is under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or other intoxicants may be incapacitated and therefore unable to consent.
- Consent cannot be given when it is the result of any coercion, intimidation, force, or threat of harm.
- When consent is withdrawn or can no longer be given, sexual activity must stop.
UB Partnerships for Violence Prevention
Crisis Services' Advocate Program is made up of people who extend understanding and support to survivors of sexual assault. A 24-hour hotline is available at 716.834.3131. Call anytime day or night for live support, or learn more at www.crisisservices.org
Resources for Faculty/Staff
In an effort to provide an appropriate and coordinated response to campus victims of sexual assault, this protocol, resource listing, and proxy reporting process have been established. Developed in consultation with various university units, this protocol provides staff persons, to whom an assault may be reported, an opportunity to respond in a manner designed to best serve victim's needs and meet institutional responsibilities. This protocol should be used in conjunction with campus sexual assault policy and individual unit procedures.
We offer workshops for students, including:
- Relationship Jeopardy
- Gender Matters
- Telling Our Story
- Bystander Intervention Training
- How to Help a Sexual Assault Survivor
- Let's Get it On: The What's, Why's and How's of Consent
- You + Me =? An Open Discussion About Relationships
Bring a workshop to your class or student group! Use our online program request form.
The more individuals are informed and involved‚ the closer we can come to a violence free campus. Each of our programs is provided by the Violence Prevention Specialist and/or highly trained Health & Wellness Educators (Men's Group or Alliance).
Opportunities for Students
There is no single thing that any one of us can do to prevent rape and sexual assault, but by each of us taking a small step we can bring about a big change.
Getting involved is the best way possible to be a part of a massive social change effort to make our campus safer! We need every student at UB to be a part of this movement. Learn ways that you can make a difference:
- Small steps you can do
- Student Violence Prevention Groups are for men and women students at UB working together to end sexual violence. Get involved with one or both of our groups today!
- The Men's Group - The Men's Group provides training, presentations, and awareness raising events with a focus on men as allies in preventing sexual violence.
- The Student Survivor Advocacy Alliance - The Alliance unites survivors of sexual assault with allies at UB to take a stand against rape, sexual assault, and intimate partner violence.
- UB Resources
- Counseling Services - Coercion, Rape, and Surviving
- Student Health Services - Women's Health Clinic: Emergency contraception
- University Police - State University of New York at Buffalo Response to Victims of Campus Sexual Assault, Staff Protocol and Proxy Reporting
- Campus services and resources - UB Violence Prevention Team
- Other Resources
- The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) is the nation's largest anti-sexual assault organization. RAINN operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1.800.656.HOPE, as well as an online hotline . Inside, you'll find statistics, counseling resources, prevention tips, news and more.
- MaleSurvivor is committed to preventing, healing, and eliminating all forms of sexual victimization of boys and men through support, treatment, research, education, advocacy, and activism. Their site can help connect you with support groups, and includes male survivor discussion boards to connect with other male survivors remotely.
- The Anti-Violence Project empowers lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and HIV-affected communities and allies to end all forms of violence through organizing and education, and supports survivors through counseling and advocacy. Based out of NYC, but soon to be opening a chapter in Buffalo.
- Forge provides support, and works to improve services for transgender survivors of sexual violence, as well as their significant others, families, friends, and allies. Though based out of Wisconsin, you can contact forge for information, resources, and access to a peer-support listserv.
- Sexual Violence Information - on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website.
- Emergency contraception - on the federal government's site for women's health information. Remember: Plan B is over-the-counter and is available at Wellness Education Services in the Student Union and through the Sub Board 1 pharmacy at Michael Hall on South Campus.
- Students Active For Ending Rape (SAFER) Campus - All students have the right to a safe campus, free of sexual violence. SAFER empowers students to hold their universities accountable for having strong campus sexual assault policies and programming. We're here to help you organize for change.
- Men Can Stop Rape - empowers male youth and the institutions that serve them to work as allies with women in preventing rape and other forms of men's violence. Through awareness-to-action education and community organizing, we promote gender equity and build men's capacity to be strong without being violent.
While sexual assault primarily affects young women (1 in 4), they are not the only targets. Men (1 in 6), individuals with disabilities, members of cultural and religious minority groups, and lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgendered individuals also experience sexual and other violent assaults and face increased barriers to reporting their victimization.
National statistics have estimated that one-in-four college women are sexually assaulted. Even though many institutions officially report zero sexual assault crimes each year; sexual assault is known to be an underreported crime. Studies have consistently shown that most perpetrators are friends, acquaintances, or someone known to the victim.
Because of the known prevalence of sexual violence among college students, it is essential that we establish a comprehensive rape and other violence prevention program. In order to build a campus wide effort the following principles will be utilized:
- Work to change campus norms that might contribute to the acceptability of acquaintance rape
- Work to challenge rape-myths
- Provide comprehensive services for victims of sexual violence
- Use a variety of approaches to reach as many students as possible with education and services
- Reduce high risk student drinking
- Involve stakeholders from the entire campus community
- Work with female and male students, in gender specific and mixed groups, to educate peers about rape and sexual assault prevention
- Tailor our efforts to the evolving needs of UB students