The Red Zone: Campus Sexual Assaults
2022 Nebraska Broadcasters Association Pinnacle Awards Best Student Radio News Story: “The Red Zone: Campus Sexual Assaults”
Luke Weidner, August 2022 graduate, advertising and public relations and journalism double major; from Norfolk, NE.
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[00:00:00.660]Sadly people don't riot
[00:00:02.760]every single time it happens,
[00:00:04.290]and things don't blow up.
[00:00:06.570]These are the thoughts
[00:00:07.403]of a recent sexual assault survivor,
[00:00:09.150]whom we will call Jennifer, for privacy purposes.
[00:00:12.180]Accountability is just a big issue,
[00:00:15.060]and not enough people knowing that it's an issue.
[00:00:20.340]School is back in session,
[00:00:21.600]which also marks the beginning
[00:00:22.800]of something called the "Red Zone."
[00:00:24.540]Over half of sexual assaults on campus
[00:00:26.430]take place during this time.
[00:00:27.870]And John Baker of the UNLPD confirmed
[00:00:29.940]that it has been part of a regular pattern.
[00:00:32.670]But going as far back as 2015,
[00:00:35.850]it has been consistently present.
[00:00:38.670]Both the raised awareness of the Red Zone
[00:00:40.200]and recent on-campus protests
[00:00:41.790]has made sexual assault a big topic
[00:00:43.620]of discussion at UNL this year.
[00:00:46.019]No means no!
[00:00:47.600]No means no!
[00:00:49.080]No means no!
From Channel 8 News,
[00:00:50.460]these were the chants
[00:00:51.293]of thousands of protestors--
No means no!
[00:00:52.530]On campus earlier this semester
[00:00:54.090]over a sexual assault investigation
[00:00:56.010]involving a member of UNL's FIJI fraternity.
[00:00:59.070]UNLPD, along with general investigation
[00:01:01.230]as part of their duties,
[00:01:02.220]hope to educate students.
[00:01:03.750]So, bystander intervention is a concept
[00:01:06.840]that is truly important that someone has the power
[00:01:09.540]to help another person, even a stranger,
[00:01:13.290]by intervening in a situation.
[00:01:16.080]UNLPD also wants victims to know
[00:01:17.670]that they take a victim-based approach.
[00:01:19.560]If a sexual assault is reported,
[00:01:21.150]the department will only work as fast
[00:01:22.800]as a survivor is comfortable with.
[00:01:24.690]Patrick Baker, ASUN Student Body External Vice President,
[00:01:27.690]spoke about how ASUN Student Government is taking action
[00:01:30.360]and their commitment to students and sexual assault victims.
[00:01:33.390]We're working with the Chancellor's Office
[00:01:34.920]and university administration
[00:01:36.210]and Voices of Hope to explore a potential partnership
[00:01:39.390]to bring them back to campus.
[00:01:41.610]Another thing that we're doing is
[00:01:43.110]we're exploring an emergency fund
[00:01:45.000]for students that they can use to go and get counseling
[00:01:48.840]or use funds that ASUN can allocate to them directly
[00:01:54.120]to get the help that they need following a sexual assault.
[00:01:56.490]CARE is in regular contact with UNLPD and ASUN.
[00:01:59.460]The main purpose of this organization
[00:02:01.050]is to address sexual and gender-based misconduct.
[00:02:03.780]UNL's Counseling and Psychological Services,
[00:02:06.270]better known as CAPS, is another support service.
[00:02:08.700]All counseling services are covered by student fees.
[00:02:11.670]Jennifer had some mixed feelings about the sudden new push
[00:02:14.310]against sexual assault by on-campus organizations.
[00:02:17.280]You just really never know on campus
[00:02:20.100]how things are gonna go.
[00:02:21.990]Feel like a lot of girls on campus aren't believed as it is.
[00:02:26.730]So trying to find someone outside of campus would be
[00:02:30.810]you kind of feel like you have a little bit more trust,
[00:02:32.610]which isn't a good thing.
[00:02:34.200]So that's another thing too
[00:02:35.280]that is something that needs to be worked on.
[00:02:37.980]While on-campus organizations continue their fight
[00:02:40.230]against sexual assault on their grounds,
[00:02:42.030]students are also working to both stay safe
[00:02:43.950]and find comfort in their surrounding resources.
[00:02:46.320]More awareness about sexual assault
[00:02:47.850]can help save a lot of students,
[00:02:49.320]both in the Red Zone and year round.
[00:02:51.390]Especially in this time with everything
[00:02:55.080]really just coming out and just blowing up like it did.
[00:02:58.860]I think they're doing the best that they can for now.
[00:03:01.800]I'm Luke Weidner reporting for 90.3 KRNU News.
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