By Michelle Lyles
It’s On Us is a campaign that was founded in September 2014 to stop sexual assault on college campuses.
ESU has teamed up with the campaign to help open up the discussion about college sexual assault.
According to www.itsonus.org, the It’s On Us campaign aims to teach to people recognize non-consensual sex as sexual assault, to identify situations in which a sexual assault may occur, to intervene in situations where consent has not or cannot be given and to create an environment where sexual assault is unacceptable and survivors can be supported.
The It’s On Us campaign at ESU starts in April, however there are plenty of events that happen on campus in order to keep the conversation relevant.
It is a student’s job to help someone when they come forward. We need to be able to make the student feel safe and comfortable and while doing that.
“We need to eliminate stigmas and make sure we are to support the victim in any way that we need to,” said interim Coordinator for Health and Wellness Education Laura Suits.
Laura also referenced some of the on-campus resources such as: The Department of Counseling and Psychological Services, Campus Police and the Title IX initiative.
“It’s about creating an environment that is accepting to survivors and accommodating them to fullest extent and giving them the tools they need to succeed,” said Suits.
“I have seen students walk and protest with us for the It’s On Us campaign and I have also seen a lot of students sign our pledge billboard that we have outside of the Union in the spring semester as well as giving speeches on the initiative,” said Destinee Ward, an undergraduate student and former peer educator.
ESU has also held a documentary showing of The Hunting Ground on campus.
There is also a sexual assault awareness event every year. A lot of the resources that ESU uses for this campaign comes from the It’s On Us website, which has the option for those to donate, take the pledge, and tools in order to help victims.
“Sexual assault isn’t something that comes up in conversation, however ESU students need to face the facts that unfortunately it is something that happens and students need to be able to properly respond and be able to help when the conversation is started,” said Ward.
ESU is raising awareness and changing the uncomfortable conversation surrounding sexual assault and taking the necessary steps to help students feel more aware of this issue.
With students being more aware, victims feel comfortable to come forward and talk about it.
The It’s On Us campaign takes the pledge of see something, say something.
This means if you see anything suspicious, report it right away.
For more information or to donate, visit www.itsonus.org.
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