WXXI AM News

University of Rochester Adopts New Sex Assault Awareness Campaign

Feb 10, 2015

Student leaders and administrators at the University of Rochester have created a new video designed to raise awareness about sexual assault on campus.

Student Association President Antoinette Esce says "It's On Us" is part of a national public awareness campaign that U of R recently adopted. She says their sexual assault policies are evolving to continue to change campus culture as a whole.

"We haven't yet run a concerted campaign against sexual assault, which is why we're so excited about this new video coming out. It's kind of the first time we've actually gone outwards and said, 'We oppose sexual assault and we're working to prevent it.' "

David Markakis is the President of the student organization Men Opposing Violence Everywhere, or MOVE. He says the campaign targets 100% of the campus population.

"That really includes people that are often left out of the conversation like trans-students and minorities, or even reaching out to faculty and administration. Everybody needs to be a part of the campaign. It can't just be students that are victims."

Esce says they were originally unsure whether to adopt the national policy because she and other student leaders weren't sure a national brand would be effective on U of R's unique campus. Eventually, she says, they decided the message works for them.

U of R recently reformed their sexual assault policy to establish affirmative consent and train more female officers to assist victims in cases of sexual assault.