In light of recent national news coverage of the Steubenville rape case as well as in an effort to increase awareness of sexual assualt, the University Counseling Center (UCC) issues the following:
First and foremost we want to emphasize the strong commitment we feel to helping survivors of sexual assault. We invite anyone desiring support to contact us for a confidential consult to help find services and support that fit their needs.
Secondly, considering the campus community we are aware of the many different reactions to the confrontation with the reality of sexual assault. It is a difficult reality to face. Some, perhaps most, feel outraged and respond by wanting to act, or change the reality facing us. Others might respond in disbelief, arguing that such events, though real, happen far from our sphere of influence. Still others might respond by engaging in a manner that normalizes or trivializes sexual violence.
In one way or another each of these reactions protects against the awful reality that faces us. Although understandable from a psychological perspective, and even helpful in the case of the first reaction described, we want to strongly emphasize the harm and pain caused by the second and third reactions. In line with our direct support to survivors of sexual assault, we want to align ourselves firmly against those who in any way normalize, trivialize, or deny the existence, persistence, and destructive nature of sexual violence.
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