This Friday 19th January 2018, Union of Brunel Students invites students and University staff to join us in a 'blackout' to raise awareness of sexual harassment and assault.
Following on from the Time's Up protest at the Golden Globes this year, and inspired by other universities we are wearing all black this Friday in solidarity.
Sexual harassment and assault are serious and pervasive issues in society, and across university campuses. The figures speak for themselves:
50% of British women and 20% of British men have been sexually harassed at their work or place of study (BBC Survey - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-41741615)
Of those who had been harassed, 63% of women and 79% of men kept it to themselves.
One in three UK female students has been sexually assaulted or abused on campus (Telegraph - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-life/11343380/Sexually-assault-1-in-3-UK-female-students-victim-on-campus.html)
One in seven students experienced a serious sexual or physical assault during their time as a student (NUS – Hidden Marks Report https://www.nus.org.uk/Global/NUS_hidden_marks_report_2nd_edition_web.pdf)
17% of Students have been victims of some form of sexual harassment during their first week of term, with a further 29% having witnessed it directed at somebody else (NUS, 2015 - https://www.nus.org.uk/en/news/two-thirds-of-freshers-not-aware-of-sexual-harrassment-reporting-procedures-at-university/)
We as a union will work to combat this deeply troubling issue. Part of that is raising awareness, and kickstarting conversations on the problems to inspire ideas to tackle them. We want to encompass and support all students, if you have something you want to add to the conversation email us.
Your Union supports you. If you've been affected by any of the issues mentioned in this article, and would like some support please contact The ARC by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or dropping in Monday-Friday between 10am and 3pm during term time.
You can also see the University's page with advice for survivors of sexual assault and violence here.
Time's Up on sexual harassment, let's make a stand together.