Scrolling Headlines:

Former NAACP President Benjamin Jealous gives talk at UMass -

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Anti-racism workshop teaches tactics to fight oppression in community -

February 25, 2017

Providence power play haunts UMass hockey in 6-2 loss -

February 25, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 10 Providence on Senior Night at the Mullins center -

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UMass men’s basketball falters in the second half, falling to George Washington 83-67 Thursday -

February 24, 2017

UPDATE: SGA announces second and third artist for ‘Mullins Live!’ -

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Divest UMass and STPEC host panel on building ‘solidarity economies’ in the Trump era -

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UMass women’s basketball losing streak extends to 10 games after loss to URI -

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Sixth annual Advocacy Day set to take place March 1 -

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Panel discusses racial, sexual and psychological violence in response to art exhibit -

February 23, 2017

Judy Dixon enters final season with UMass tennis with simple message: One match at a time -

February 23, 2017

UMass baseball enduring early-season limitation in playing in New England -

February 23, 2017

Minutewomen softball begins season with cross-country travel, string of tournaments -

February 23, 2017

UMass baseball looks to bounce back from disappointing 2016 season -

February 23, 2017

UMass women’s lacrosse senior Hannah Murphy is Angela McMahon’s latest legend in the making -

February 23, 2017

UMass women’s lacrosse senior defenders accept leadership roles in quest for ninth consecutive Atlantic 10 Championship -

February 23, 2017

Kelsey McGovern rejoins UMass women’s lacrosse as an assistant coach after starring for Minutewomen -

February 23, 2017

UMass men’s lacrosse looks to continue improving throughout 2017 season -

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Spring Sports Special Issue 2017 -

February 23, 2017

UMass men’s lacrosse defense relying on senior leadership with new faces in starting lineup -

February 23, 2017

Letter: Response to March 31 Letter on topic of sexual violence

Flickr/Chase Carter

Flickr/Chase Carter

To the Editor, in response to the Letter to the Editor on March 31:

We appreciate the thoughtful letter of March 31 and agree that preventing and responding to campus sexual violence is a priority.

Sexual violence is a complex problem. Research shows that effectively addressing sexual violence requires a comprehensive strategy that deals with individual behavior, community standards and a compassionate response to victims/survivors, and that holds perpetrators accountable.

Sexual violence continues to be the most under-reported violent crime in the world. According to the National Research Council, less than 20 percent of sexual assaults are ever reported to the authorities. The Center for Women & Community at the University of Massachusetts employs a Civilian Advocate who works with both campus and municipal police departments to reduce the barriers survivors face in filing complaints of sexual assault. The advocate can support survivors through the challenging criminal process, which can take up to two years. Unfortunately, the conviction rate for sexual violence is 50 percent or less, depending on the jurisdiction. Legislation and law enforcement alone cannot stop sexual violence.

The bystander campaign at UMass is another component of the multiple efforts implemented to prevent and respond to sexual violence. The campus training on “delegate, distract and direct” is specifically inclusive of all members of the student body, which is consistent with the recommendations made by RAINN. The campaign communicates that recognizing and stopping sexual violence is everyone’s responsibility.

The bystander campaign is not the first effort on campus to address sexual violence. The Center for Women & Community has been facilitating sexual assault prevention education for more than 30 years.

The University has also implemented a variety of other approaches, including a coordinated response to survivors, training for first responders and a revised Student Code of Conduct and process that allows for expulsion of a student found guilty of sexual assault. The University has demonstrated its commitment to a comprehensive strategy that includes teaching prevention, effecting policy change, supporting survivors and using both the campus conduct and the criminal justice process to hold perpetrators accountable.

Everyone in our community has an important role to play in preventing and responding to sexual violence. For more information about volunteer opportunities visit the CWC website: www.umass.edu/ewc.

Sincerely,

Becky Lockwood
Associate Director of Counseling and Rape Crisis Services
Center for Women & Community

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