Sexual violence is any unwanted sexual act or activity that takes place without your consent. It can be perpetrated by a complete stranger, or by someone you know and trust. Sexual violence can happen to anyone. No-one ever deserves it or asks for it to happen – the sole person responsible is the perpetrator.
Responses to sexual violence
Those who have experienced sexual violence often struggle with feelings of shame, guilt and self-blame that can make it difficult to talk to anyone about their experiences. Survivors also often fear that others will blame them or that they won't be believed.
However you are feeling, try to remember that this is not your fault - you are not to blame, and you are not alone.
What is Warwick doing to tackle sexual violence?
Today, students across the world are a leading voice on issues of equality, diversity and liberation, and have the power to bring about real positive social change. Sexual violence and harassment are widespread problems that exist across society, and university campuses are no exception to that, including Warwick. Every single one of us has a responsibility to acknowledge this issue and take action to tackle it. Together, as a community, we must strive to make our campus and local area as safe and inclusive as possible.
Every member of the Warwick community has access to the online bystander intervention and consent education education module Consent Matters via Moodle. In 2016/17, Warwick SU ran a pilot programme delivering the academic Intervention Initiative module to self-selecting students in two departments, PAIS and Law. The Intervention Initiative module is currently being offered to all first-year PAIS undergraduates. Using a ‘bystander’ model and utilising social norms theory, the programme is intended to change participants’ behaviour by unlearning passive assumptions about identity, violence, and one’s own power to influence the world around them. Ultimately, the programme is designed to increase the likelihood of an intervention by the participant, whether this is an intervention into a sexist chant or into a case of ongoing domestic abuse of a friend, for example.
Find out more information on the #WeGetConsent campaign page.