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University takes increased measures to address gender-based violence

News Release Release Date: March 30, 2017 11:00 a.m.

The University of Regina released its Gender-Based Violence (GBV) Needs Assessment Report today. The report was generated following a comprehensive study launched in September 2016 to develop recommendations leading to the creation of a comprehensive sexual assault and violence prevention action plan.

“The results highlight a number of positive initiatives that we have already undertaken, and show significant support within the University community for addressing gender-based violence,” said University of Regina President and Vice-Chancellor Dr. Vianne Timmons. “However, the assessment also found that there is still a great deal of work to do, and we are committed to doing it.”

Timmons said the report’s recommendations will help focus current efforts to prevent sexual assault and violence, improve the University’s response, and ensure that students, faculty and staff have a welcoming, safe place to learn, teach and work.

“The University of Regina has shown incredible leadership in its commitment to developing comprehensive, evidence-based solutions to the issue of sexual violence on campus. The implementation of these recommendations will set a gold standard for this approach on Canadian campuses,” said Todd Minerson, Executive Director of White Ribbon.

The project was conducted in association with Parker P, the consulting arm of White Ribbon Canada, the world’s largest movement of men and boys working to end violence against women and girls and promote gender equity, healthy relationships and a new vision of masculinity.

The report has nine major recommendations, which are:

1.    Creating a new Director/Administrative position with overall responsibility for GBV strategies at the University;

2.    Improving the current Sexual Violence and Assault Policy to ensure clarity for survivors regarding the reporting process;

3.    Developing survivor-focused protocols that are made available to all students, staff, faculty and administration;

4.    Renewing the Personal Safety Coordinator (PSC) position in order to strengthen its support of sexual violence survivors;

5.    Developing and implementing a Sexual Violence Task Force to coordinate the sexual violence response across the University community;

6.    Undertaking a review of GBV education and awareness programs to evaluate their capacity to promote transformative change and effectively contribute to prevention efforts;

7.    Increasing the capacity of Man Up Against Violence™ to deliver primary prevention and educational opportunities within the University community;

8.    Ensuring collaboration of agencies/resources currently working on the issue of sexual violence on campus; and

9.    Developing community-based collaborations with off-campus service providers.

To address the first recommendation and expedite the process of responding to the others, Timmons announced today that Roz Kelsey will serve as the University’s first Director of Gender Violence Prevention Strategies. Kelsey is a professor in the Faculty of Kinesiology and Health Studies who established, and is Chair of, the Man Up Against Violence movement at the University.

The GBV needs assessment project was led by the University’s UR Safe program, which is designed to educate the University community about sexual assault and violence, provide resources and support for survivors, and raise awareness to help prevent sexual assault and violence on campus.

“I would like to recognize the commitment and efforts of all those involved in the development of this report,” said Timmons. “In particular, I want to recognize the courage of the students, faculty and staff who shared their experiences of sexual assault and violence to help make our University a better place for everyone.”

A copy of the report is available on the website supporting the University’s Sexual Assault and Violence Policy: http://www.uregina.ca/ursafe/.

 

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