College Students More Vulnerable to Sexual Abuse
As the #metoo movement grows, sexual assault and abuse has been a topic of much conversation. Something we don’t talk about as often is how prevalent it is on college campuses.
About 32% of college students report experiencing dating violence by a previous partner. Abuse can be physical or emotional and much of this goes unreported -- in fact, 70% of young victims don’t realize they’re being abuse by their partner. Peer pressure, the presence of drugs and alcohol, stressful schedules, tight-knit friend groups, and social media contribute to higher rates of abuse, sexual assault, and stalking for students.
It has become increasingly important to put policies in place to protect students who have experienced abuse from the dangers of retaliation, and punishment. As it stands, the U.S. Department of Education enacted Title IX protections, which require colleges and universities to investigate instances of domestic violence among their students and take care to protect victims from their abusers.
However, these laws do not require legal trials, and administrators cannot issue legal protective orders or jail time. As a result, many victims of abuse on college campuses who seek help from the administration are left more vulnerable than victims in the real world.
For more statistics on this issue visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network.
I recently spoke with Donna Deandra, legal advocate of Atlantic county women's center who explains the signs of abuse and tells us how to get help.