In particular, a special adviser has been appointed to address campus culture and the implementation of mandatory sexual and gender-based violence prevention and awareness training for all new students, which must be completed before the start in September.
The university will also carry out an immediate and thorough reassessment of your orientation week. Last September, thousands of students protested after allegations that up to 30 young women were drugged and sexually assaulted at a campus residence.
We listen to our campus community and expert partnerssays university president Alan Shepard.
Together with them, we want to be leaders at work to prevent gender-based violence from happening on college campuses and throughout society.
The measures follow recommendations from an independent review commissioned by Shepard, which analyzed the sexual abuse allegations posted on social media in September. They are also inspired by a report by the university’s internal action committee on sexual and gender-based violence that was formed in response to the allegations and the shutdown.
Committees formed to promote accountability
The reassessment of the orientation week’s activities aims to promote accountability, the university says. All student leaders at this integration event will be required to participate in an intensive two-week training program that emphasizes safety and discourages excessive use of alcohol and recreational drugs.
Alan Shepard highlights how difficult the past school year was for the Western community in many ways.
In September, freshman Gabriel Neil was also assaulted and killed near campus.
The impact of last September has rightly caused us to retreat as an establishment. We are re-examining our culture, values, policies and approach to guiding students towards campus life.he says.
And we are redoubling our efforts as a community to use this moment to bring about real and lasting change.
A new committee against sexual and gender-based violence, comprised of student, staff and faculty representatives, will be formed, with input as needed from various community partners.
It will be centered around assault survivors and will focus on training initiatives aimed at prevention, safety and culture change.
The university said it would support independent student organizations such as fraternities and sororities in their efforts to address the problem of violence.
Western has been criticized for the fraternities culture on its campus and its role in sexual violence, but the university says it is not affiliated with any of these groups.
Last week, Ontario’s progressive conservative candidate Stephen Lecce apologized for taking part in a
slave auction organized by the fraternity during his time at Western.
Mr. Shepard appreciates the participation of members of the London community who came forward to offer their perspective and experience and guided Western through this process of change.
Changing the culture will take time, perseverance, and the active involvement of everyone on campus. Together, we remain committed to actively working to end sexual and gender-based violence on campus and in our community. he declared.