It is imperative that all women stay informed of the risk and risk reduction techniques concerning sexual assault. With the start of college classes, it is especially important to continue the conversation about sexual assault.
Quick facts reported by the American Association of University Women:
- College-aged women are four times more likely than any other age group to face sexual assault.
- One in five women is a target of attempted or completed assault while they are a college student.
- Alcohol is the most widely used date-rape drug; 89 percent of assaults occur when the survivor is incapacitated due to alcohol.
- Less than five percent of rapes and attempted rapes of college students are reported to campus authorities.
The only people who can prevent sexual assault are those who perpetrate it, but the following risk reduction techniques can be used to lessen your likelihood of being assaulted:
- Listen to your gut feeling. Do not worry about being seen as rude. If you feel uncomfortable or at risk, leave and go to a safe place.
- Use the buddy system. Refuse to go anywhere alone or with people you do not know well. Stay with your group and remember to look out for your friends, too.
- Drink responsibly. Before leaving for a social function or date, eat a full meal. At the event, have a glass of water between each drink and know your limits. Have a designated driver at all times to ensure you will get home safely.
- Know your resources. Most Louisiana colleges have sexual assault support and services to help with police reports, university judicial reports, medical care and emotional support. You can also contact the Sexual Trauma and Awareness & Response (STAR) 24/7 hotline at 225-383-RAPE (7273).