One year after the updated version of St. Thomas University’s sexual assault policy, the “effectiveness” of it is still up in the air.
STU updated their sexual assault policy September 25, 2015 in hopes of covering all angles.
The school is made up of about a 75 per cent female student population, so the university saw a responsibility to have measures in place for safety.
“We had two or three different policies that covered these kinds of sexual violence issues, but we wanted to bring one new policy together that covered it from A to Z,” said Jeffrey Carleton, the Director of Communications at STU.
Many students were involved in Friday nights Take Back the Night march. The march aims to bring attention to violence towards women, and their goal to “take back the night.”
The updated policy [linked below] tries to aim at different stigmas people face when reporting on a sexual assault and tries to calm them. A portion of the policy also contains a Q&A for frequently asked questions.
Carleton said trying to make the policy easier to understand was one of the goals the university was going for.
The work on the updated policy has the Director of Community Development for the Fredericton Sexual Assault Crisis Centre, Jennifer Richard, feeling upbeat.
“Having one policy, one document, to catch all of the ‘what ifs’ and the different scenarios that could happen. We don’t know if that’s going to work yet, but I’m feeling pretty optimistic about it…”
She went on to say she liked the good spirit that was going into the development of the policies and how the people involved were aware of the issues.
The policy has hit its one year anniversary. I would be fair to say only time can tell how effective the policy will be to students in the long term.