May 29, 2017
University of Calgary's sexual violence policy approved by Board of Governors
The standalone sexual violence policy for the University of Calgary has been approved by the Board of Governors, the result of more than two years of work by people across the university. The policy is a fundamental element in creating and sustaining a safer campus environment for all community members.
The policy identifies how the university will respond to incidents of sexual violence, including supports available to those who have experienced or witnessed sexual violence, or those who are alleged to have committed sexual violence. It provides clear reporting options, and defines complex concepts, such as consent and sexual violence, to help educate all members of our campus about the importance of this issue.
“I am proud of the work that has been completed over the last two years. This policy is very important in ensuring the safety and security of people on our campus,” says Dru Marshall, provost and vice-president (academic). “This policy has been informed by our students, faculty and staff and reflects the diverse needs of our community.”
Consultation has been held on the sexual violence policy since October 2016, with extensive feedback and commentary incorporated into the final document. Online consultation in January 2017 resulted in 314 responses — nearly half from students. The sexual violence policy was also presented for feedback at 16 formal meetings.
An important component of the policy is the Sexual Violence Support Advocate (SVSA), a centralized resource for one-on-one support, guidance on reporting processes and timelines, and educational outreach. The SVSA will also identify gaps in process and changes required.
“The policy provides a defined response from the university regarding incidents of sexual violence, and includes important educational elements that will help increase awareness,” says Marshall. “Sexual violence continues to be a crucial issue for post-secondary institutions to address meaningfully, clearly and in a timely way. We have a duty to create and promote a safe environment for our students, faculty and staff.”
Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to take time to read the final policy, which takes effect on June 1, 2017. If you have questions or concerns about how it affects you, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you require support related to sexual violence, please visit our support website.