January 24th, 2013
I hope I’m not the only one who had a heavy heart when reading the message on the Doudna steps yesterday. If you didn’t see it, the message chalked on the steps says (paraphrased) “My rapist still attends EIU. Will no one listen to me?”
If you didn’t know 1 in 6 women will be victims of sexual assault or attempted sexual assault in their lifetime. It’s also a statistic that there are only 1-3 “reported” rapes a year at EIU. Sounds great, right? Sadly, the statistic gives the false sense of security that sexual assaults just don’t happen “here.”
What you don’t hear is all the stories of victims on campus. This message only proves the silence our campus survivors feel. If our administration isn’t speaking publicly about this they are doing a disservice to the survivors on campus. Survivors should feel the unwavering support of and entire university behind them administration, services, and police included.
I believe in Eastern Illinois University and yet it is with great disappointment that I saw this message. I know EIU to be better than this. I, as staff, as a male supporter of survivors, demand more. I will be writing the following message on the steps, “We expect to work on a campus that supports victims.” If you too believe this statement then join me at noon today (Thursday) in signing your name on the steps with me in support of the victims and demand more.
Article: Chalked message reaches out to campus
Photo: Chalked message reaches out to campus
January 25th, 2013
Article: Community rallies to support erased message
Photo: Community rallies to support erased message
Article: University removes chalking
The support that this campus showed really renewed my faith in EIU. I totally believe in this campus, and the plea for help on the Doudna Steps shook my roots and beliefs. But yesterday this campus showed it’s true colors. Supporters came, proving that ‘we are listening!’, and we are supporting with our love, compassion and anger too. Anger that this would happen on our campus – that survivors would report and be shunned.
But let’s put our anger to use, and stand in solidarity with so many victims that have felt so alone they have not had the courage or strength to keep fighting. If you can, give to SACIS, they have done more for this community then I can start to explain, and are a true blessing for this community.
But mostly, let’s not forget this past few days, let’s continue our work and demand change!