Everyone should be fully aware that sexual assault is a huge issue that’s even prevalent in Happy Valley. Every student receives a timely warning almost once a week. Those timely warnings just inform us about the the sexual assault that happens that’s actually reported.. Can you imagine how many happen that go unreported? According to the National Assault Hotline, only 34.4% of females actually report sexual assault to the police. For everyone timely warning that you receive, imagine 2 more of the same report that you will not receive. One of the biggest reasons why sexual assault isn’t reported is because in the majority of reported sexual assault, the perpetrator will not be prosecuted. And when they are prosecuted, the public sees trials like the one with Brock Turner where he was sent to jail for a mere 3 months for being caught raping an unconscious girl outside of a dumpster.
This is a pretty heavy subject, but it’s something that needs to be addressed. The biggest question today is “How do we prevent sexual assault from happening?” The easy way to answer that question is to blame the victim. It’s easy to tell women that they need to watch what they wear and watch how they act because that someone is related to another person’s active decision to be a horrible person. This is easy to do and that is why victim blaming is so prevalent in society.
In multiple studies, scientists studied the effectiveness of sexual assault prevention. Through control groups, and random and placebo techniques, the scientists accounted for third variables that may effect the outcomes of the studies. A third variable could be for example, race or sex. In the studies, out of the 102 treatment intervention for sexual assault awareness there were 262 effect sizes based on a sexual assault education program. These different effects that were found in the study show that there were differences in attitudes towards rape, empathy for victims, and increased knowledge on the issues. The results of the studies is that yes, there was an change in attitude with sexual assault education programs in place. But what needs to be further studied is if these programs have a lasting impact impact on the behaviors of the subject.
Prevention is important but until we find a very effective way to prevent such horrible acts to occur, we must be prepared for when something does happen. Luckily, Penn State has a lot of resources for victims of sexual assault. The 3 main services set in place to help victims is through the Title IX, UHS, and CAPS. Keep these services in mind so you can also be a support system for anyone who may go through sexual assault. One last thing that I want to leave you with is maybe some small form of education on the subject. Consent is pretty easy to understand.. It’s as easy as tea.