As both students and survivors, we have had enough. Incredibly brave survivors have added their voices to an ongoing effort to hold Washington University accountable for ensuring students’ safety in regards to sexual violence on this campus.
After a night of remembering nothing between pre-gaming a fraternity mixer with my friends and waking up to many texts asking if I made it home, including one that said, “Do you think you were drugged last night?” I stayed quiet.
Responding to calls from students and faculty to have the school divest from companies that profit from fossil fuels, Chancellor Mark Wrighton of Washington University said, “our position has long been that our investment policy will not be…used to support political, social or other agendas.”
I am writing to you today not as a member of Leaders in Interpersonal Violence Education (LIVE), nor as a facilitator for the Date, but as a student who has been consistently disappointed with Washington University’s response to sexual assault accusations
The student accused of physically assaulting the author of an anonymous op-ed published in Student Life April 16 is only allowed to be on the Washington University Danforth Campus to attend class and take exams, “pending completion of formal adjudication.”
Sure, op-eds published in Student Life last spring revealed massive flaws in the school’s Title IX procedure—and the announcement of three federal Title IX investigations into the school over the summer added insult to injury—but the University was working on it. Things were supposed to be getting fixed.
I sat in one of the desks of a Seigle Hall classroom. It felt so public; anyone could have walked in and seen me crying as I told my story to the fraternity leadership.
The print edition of today’s newspaper includes an op-ed from Washington University Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Lori White entitled “My heart sank…because I understand.”
When I read the op-ed in Student Life from a student sharing that she had been physically assaulted by a fellow student and suggesting that other students may have been sexually assaulted by the same student, my heart sank.
I’ve tried doing this the right way, I really have. There has to be a way the University can keep students safe from known threats.