It is incredibly important to feel safe on campus. That is why the BC government is investing $760,000 to prevent sexual assaults on campus. The funding will go towards universities in the province and the government has shared how the money will be used.
The Minster of Skills Education and Advanced Training Melanie Mark announced that over $700,000 would go toward improving sexual prevention policies on university campuses.
The announcement was made at a forum called Moving Forward Together: Building Capacity to Prevent and Respond to Sexual Violence on Campus earlier this month.
During this forum, 125 students, post-secondary and community representatives got together to hear from a wide variety of speakers to discuss the issues around sexual violence on campus. They also talked about preventive measures and tools needed to respond to sexual violence on campus.
“Campuses should be safe places for everyone,” Mark said. “Students have been clear they want all stakeholders in post-secondary education to take action to address sexual violence. Sensitive and serious issues, such as sexual violence, will require some honest conversations and commitment for change. Students, faculty and staff are essential to framing this dialogue.”
Provincial initiatives worth the $760,000 pricetag will include coordinated resources so institutions can learn from one another and share training.
The funding will also go to support policies and processes regarding sexual violence and misconduct to ensure there is a clear understanding.
The investment will also help with outreach to students through the form of surveys to gauge their experiences and perceptions of the efforts.
According to the provincial government, one in five women will experience sexualized violence while study at a post-secondary institution.
“When addressing sexualized violence on campuses, our primary focus must always be on supporting survivors and putting students’ safety and well-being first," said Anna-Elaine Rempel, Capilano Students’ Union president, and co-emcee of the forum.
"More students now are becoming aware of the prevalence of sexualized violence at our institutions and that more comprehensive action needs to be taken to address and prevent it.”