‘Not Anymore’ program a prerequisite to spring registrationcsudhbulletin October 19, 2016 0 COMMENTS
Think you know everything there is about preventing sexual assault? You may not.
By Julissa James
Editor in Chief
Cal State Dominguez Hills is attempting to minimize campus violence by requiring all students to complete “Not Anymore,” a mandatory online training program designed to prevent sexual assault.
Requiring students to complete this program in order to register for spring semester allows Dominguez Hills to meet federal mandates on the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), and Title IX, a federal law that prohibits gender discrimination at universities.
Although failing to meet these mandates would result in loss of federal funding, a prohibition statement shown at the beginning of the program reassured that Dominguez Hills’ main priority lies with the safety and well being of students.
“Not Anymore” was originally required in October 2015. Those who took it successfully hen were also required to sit through a course refresher this year.
The full course covers everything from sexual assault, rape culture, bystander intervention, domestic violence, harassment and stalking, along with the importance of healthy relationships. The course refresher mainly focuses on the all-important matter of consent.
Because of the sensitive nature of the content, “Not Anymore” offers trigger warnings and a link to a list of resources for those who need to seek help regarding previous or ongoing abuse.
On this list, is the Women’s Resource Center (WRC), where those who were triggered by “Not Anymore” are encouraged by staff to come seek counseling and support. WRC can oftentimes act as a middle man, and offer referrals to other resources depending on the situation.
“Not Anymore” is made up of a series of educational videos and testimonials from assault survivors that attempt to reach audiences in a more personal way. These testimonials are when the trigger warnings come into play.
In one testimonial, a man emotionally shares his story of being assaulted as a freshman in college while passed out from intoxication at a house party.
“I learned how you can really mentally get destroyed when consent is not present,” he said.
Educating college students on healthy sex and relationships seems more crucial than ever.
In a time where media coverage of on-campus sexual assault is increasing, a recent example being the Stanford University sexual assault case, and expectations for how universities handle sexual assault are becoming greater.
The statistics are somewhat staggering. One in five women, and one in 16 men, are sexually assaulted in college, according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.
This data makes opening conversations about sexual health and interpersonal violence necessary, even if it does take a federal mandate.
Although it can be agreed upon that this topic shouldn’t be taken lightly, the fact that CSUDH is forcing students to participate by not allowing them register for next semesters classes until they’ve completed the program is not being received well by everyone.
“I think [sexual assault] is an important topic to address, but I don’t know that this is the right way to go about it,” said Matt Wilcox, a communications major. “I don’t think it’s necessary, only because it seems like a misuse of resources and hindrance to students.”
Although Marco Aguirre, CSUDH senior, doesn’t appreciate the length of “Not Anymore,” he strongly believes in the content.
“People, especially college students, are afraid to bring up [sexual assault],” Aguirre said. “Although some students might not agree with [doing] this program, at least they will be more open to talking about it.”
“Not Anymore” provides examples of society’s double standards for men and women and false impressions about rape. According to the program, these examples are misconceptions that heavily contribute to the distorted idea some young people have of sexual assault.
“Not Anymore” explains how being raised in a society with an overwhelming rape culture can cause someone to have a false ideology of sex without even knowing it.
This is why Adrianne Valencia, a CSUDH senior, thinks this program is so necessary.
“Those who think [this information] is ‘common sense’ are sadly mistaken,” Valencia said. “Rape culture is relevant now more than ever, and this program really forces students to be more informed and come face to face with the sad truth.”
Those who need assistance for any issues related to sexual assault on campus can contact: The Women’s Resource Center at (310) 243-2486, located in SCC 148, Student Health and Psychological Services at (310) 243-3818 located in The Student Health Center, or University Police at (310) 830-1123, located in Welch Hall B-100.