By Yeymy Garcia
I never thought I’d feel unsafe at CSUDH.
Now, nothing really happened to me personally, but my girlfriends would constantly complain about a professor who would ask for their numbers, call them pet names, give massages, and visit their homes without consent.
Hearing this information from my friends created a cautious fear in me. I made sure to never see him alone after class or during office hours. If he complimented my appearance saying I looked good, I’d question whether it was inappropriate. I didn’t know, and even if I did, I didn’t know who to talk to.
According to rainn.org, only 230 out of every 1,000 sexual assaults are reported to police and 20% are female college students. Fear of retaliation, belief the police would not take action, and the belief that the incident was not important enough to report are some reasons why victims do not report the crime.
Elizabeth Schrock, CSUDH’s Title IX Officer, said it can be difficult to know when a professor has violated the policy against harassment.
“I think it’s hard to know where the line is,” Schrock said. “The student has every right to draw the line…But any behaviors that are against policy are unacceptable.”
Some behaviors against policy include sexual touching without consent and comments that make a hostile environment. Winking and compliments are not against policy but depending on the context and your boundaries, it is worthy to come talk to Schrock if you are uncomfortable and she will help and talk to you about your options to address the problem, she said. If you want your report to be 100% confidential, you can also talk to CSUDH’s Sexual Assault Victim’s Advocate, Mayra Romo.
It is important to know your rights as a student towards any harassment (sexually-related talk and bullying) and misconduct (touching). The CSU policy can be found in the most recent Executive Order 1097 which prohibits discrimination relating to protected statuses such as age, disability, gender identity and expression, race, religion, and sexual orientation. It also prohibits dating and domestic violence, stalking, and sexual activity without consent. Editor’s note: Read more about recent changes to this policy on our website csudhbulletin.com under “CSU Policy Changes.”
If you feel your rights have been violated, fill an online report or contact Schrock at firstname.lastname@example.org or pay her a visit in Welch Hall B-470H. You can also contact Sexual Assault Victim’s Advocate Mayra Romo at email@example.com.