Terri Williams | 9.29.16
What else can students do to be safe on and off campus?
There are other steps that students can take to improve campus safety. Alison Morano, a co-founder of The Affirmative Consent Project, tells GoodCall that parents should check a school’s safety practices and guidelines before sending their kids off to college. Morano says they need to know the type of questions to ask and recommends a helpful toolkit and guide to questions you should ask college administrators:
Masini adds that students need be use common sense and operate with a heightened send of awareness. “Communicate concerns with friends and roommates and look out for each other.” She warns students against walking alone at night. “Wait for the school shuttle, or take an Uber or a Lyft or a cab.” And although students want to have fun at parties, Masini warns against getting wasted or buzzed, especially if there isn’t a sober friend there to keep tabs on the inebriated person.
In addition, Morano says it’s important for students to know their surroundings, and she says they should never leave any type of drink unattended. Bystanders also play a role by stepping in when they see someone taking advantage of a person who is not in control of their faculties.
The importance of Affirmative Consent
Morano believes the concept of Affirmative Consent and “Yes means Yes” is one of the most important paradigm shifts occurring on college campus. In addition to teaching safe sex at orientation, Morano says that sexual assault should be addressed as a real threat. “It’s about creating a culture of respect, the ending of ‘rape culture’ as a norm, and the acknowledgement that sexual assault does occur by administrators, faculty and security officials at every level. “
However, Affirmative Consent is more than just including a “consent standard” to the orientation manual. “Along with the Affirmative Consent guidelines, there are additional requirements for the school: they must re-evaluate their reporting procedure and overhaul the way they handle complaints,” Morano says.