The Community Safety Office (CSO) responds to the personal safety concerns of students, staff, and faculty members of Huron, and offers support on a short term basis.
The CSO responds to all personal safety concerns by addressing the complaint, assessing the personal and community safety risks and by providing a continuum of intervention options that the complainant can explore in order to address their personal safety concern(s). The CSO can also assist in co-creating a safety plan, and in referring and working in partnership with various offices in order to address the individual’s personal safety concerns. The office can help community members file official complaints to the University under Huron’s Sexual Violence Policy.
Additionally, the office will be offering sexual violence prevention programming and women’s self defence sessions each year.
Do you have an emergency?
24-hour Campus Community Police Services
Whether you are a victim of a crime or a witness to a crime, call the police to report the incident. If the crime is in progress and it is safe for you to do so, call the police immediately by dialing 911 in order to increase the chance of the suspect being apprehended. When you call the police, it is important that you know the street name, address and name of the building where you are located and where you saw the incident.
• Immediately go to a safe place and call the police at 911 (Fire, Medical, Police)
• Provide a description of the incident and remain on the phone until the operator says it is okay.
• If the incident occurred on-campus, call Campus Police at 519-661-3300.
• Call your supervisor, if possible and inform them of the incident.
Suspicious Behavior? People are not suspicious, behavior is! If you notice something suspicious happening on campus contact Campus Police.
Examples of suspicious behavior include:
• Unusual noises, including: screaming, sounds of fighting, glass breaking, or illegal activity.
• People in buildings or areas who do not appear to be conducting legitimate business.
• Unauthorized personnel in restricted areas.
• Persons abandoning parcels or other items in unusual locations (i.e. in the lobby or in the elevator)
Be aware of the emergency numbers. Pre-program your cell phone!
• Know where the nearest exits are located if you need to escape.
• Make note of where emergency phones are located on campus *MAP FROM CAMPUS POLICE*
• Know where the nearest fire alarm is located.
• If you are working alone, ensure that the exterior doors and/or your main office door is locked.
• Don't bring valuables, jewelry or large amounts of money to school/work if you don't have to.
• Lock your office door, even if you are leaving only for a few minutes.
• If a tradesperson, repair person or courier requests admittance to your building, office or room, ask for identification. If you are not satisfied with the person's credentials, direct him or her to someone in authority for assistance.
• If someone unknown requests entrance to your building, or attempts to enter a locked area with you, refuse them entry. Tell them, "I'm sorry, but we are very concerned about security in this building" or "If you will tell me whom you want to visit, I'll buzz them for you." If they persist, direct them to someone in authority. Report any unauthorized entry to your building security or to the University Police.
• Be especially aware of maintaining security in your building during holiday or vacation periods, or during quiet times, when there are fewer people around.
• Use the buddy system. If you are going to work late at night in a University building, try to locate yourself close to someone you know. Or, let someone else know where you are and when you expect to leave.
• When you know you will be returning to your car late at night, try to park it in a well lit area.
• Contact Foot Patrol to walk you to your car at night.
• Before getting into your car, visually check the interior.
• Have your keys in your hand, so that you don’t have to search for them when you reach your car.
• Try not to park on levels of a parking garage that will be empty when you return.
• Know your nearest safe exit route from a garage.
• Back your car into a parking stall in a garage. This gives you greater visibility and allows you to drive away more quickly if you are being approached by a stranger.
• When you leave your car, walk briskly and confidently. Do not be distracted.
• If you are worried about becoming a target, vary your routine. Park in different spots at different times.
Be alert! - Being alert to what and who is around you is the best defence. Walk with a self-assured stride, with your head up, and look around (persons who look strong and in control are less attractive targets).
• Avoid wearing headphones or electronic devices that can distract you or limit what you can hear around you
• Avoid walking alone on-campus at night. Walk with a friend or call Foot Patrol to escort you to where you are going
• Avoid using short cuts or other routes that are less traveled and may obscure you from being seen by others.
• Try to stay in well lit areas, and use routes that are frequently traveled by others.
• Know where you are going - plan your route.
• Have your keys or ID card ready in your hand. This prevents you having to fumble with your keys at the doors.
• Be aware of what is going on around you. If you suspect you are being followed, indicate your suspicion by looking behind you. If you are on foot, cross the street, change directions or vary your speed. In a commercial or residential area, head for a place where there are other people as soon as possible
• If someone is following you or you even think someone is following you, immediately run away and scream and shout to attract attention. Go immediately to a phone and call Campus Police or 911.
• When walking on or off campus, be conscious of the weather and dress and prepare accordingly. Do not travel by foot unnecessarily during storms, especially if there is thunder and/or lightening
Make note of emergency phones and beacons: *MAP FROM CAMPUS POLICE*
Never drive while impaired by alcohol or drugs, and do not get in a car with someone who has been drinking or using drugs
• Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water before you start drinking alcohol
• Eat before you drink. Eating first will help you absorb alcohol less quickly
• Use the “buddy system”—be with friends who will help you stick to your limits and keep you out of trouble if you start to lose your ability to make good decisions; do the same for your friends.
• Alternate alcoholic drinks with non-alcoholic drinks to slow down the rate of your alcohol consumption
• Plan your transportation, using an Uber, a designated driver or transit to and from your destination
• Carry condoms. Alcohol can loosen inhibitions so practicing safe sex can prevent unwanted pregnancy and a possible STI
• Don’t let a stranger pour your drink or hand you one.
• Avoid using alcohol with prescription, over-the-counter, or recreational drugs, especially sedatives (e.g., Xanax, Valium) and opiates (e.g., OxyContin, Heroin), which can result in serious health consequences, including death.
In Ontario, bicycles are considered to be vehicles under the Highway Traffic Act and must therefore be ridden on roadways. Cyclists must obey all traffic laws, including traffic lights, stop signs, etc. To ensure you travel safely while bicycling in Ontario, follow these safety tips:
• Always wear a helmet.
• Ensure that your bicycle is in good mechanical order and safe to ride.
• Ensure that your bicycle is equipped with a horn or a bell to ensure that pedestrians can hear you when approaching.
• Cyclists must use hand signals to alert others when turning right, turning left or stopping.
• Cyclists need to be aware of their surroundings and be able and willing to share the road with other vehicles.
• Cyclists should ensure that they carry identification on them at all times.
• Cyclists should carry a telephone for communication purposes in case of emergencies.
• Cyclists should consider carrying a first aid kit.
• Cyclists should always ensure that they are wearing reflective clothing for maximum visibility.
• When cycling at night cyclists should always ensure that they have a light installed on the front of their bike including light reflectors on the front and back of the bike.
• Ensure your bicycles are locked with a proper lock when not in use.
A theft of opportunity can be defined as a planned or unplanned theft of property (i.e. when personal items are left unguarded, this provides the opportunity). High-value assets including small, portable items or electronic devices such as mobile phones, laptops and tablets are the most sought-after items.
• Do not leave your items unattended. This includes leaving your laptop on the desk in the library to search for a book, use the washroom, or take a quick call in the stairwell. The theft often goes unnoticed by others in the area as they only take a few seconds to commit.
• Don't leave your property out of your view. Some items have gone missing with the owner present and not paying attention. Leave your items out of the view of others; if you are reading a book, leave your laptop in your backpack and on the desk where you will see anyone attempting to tamper with it or steal your items.
• Don't assume that your friends or others around you will watch your property. If you must leave the area for any reason the best bet is to take your property with you.
• Personalize your property. Add stickers, covers, engraving or other markings that will make it personal and less attractive to thieves due to lower resale value from personalization.
• Use a cable lock attached to your laptop. Make sure that the cable is locked to something secure. You should also use security features such as passwords and encryption.
Gender-Based and Sexual Violence
ANOVA (24/7 support line for individuals who have experienced sexual assault and domestic violence: 519.642.3000 or 1.800.265.1576
Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Treatment Centre at St. Joseph’s Hospital (SADVTC)
- After Hours: 519.646.6100, press 0 and ask switchboard to page on-call, specialized nurse
- SADVTC can provide medical and emotional support at hospital as well as follow up from a social worker
Huron Wellness Centre
- Huron students are warmly welcomed to visit our Wellness Centre to seek support in achieving their best mental and emotional health.
- Our Wellness staff are here to provide non-judgmental counselling and resources that may be effective in alleviating and addressing challenges.
- Huron’s Wellness Centre is located on the pathway between Southwest Residence and Brough House Residence
- To book an appointment, 519.438.7224 ext. 716 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact the Director, Community Safety at Huron to confidentially discuss options available to survivors of sexual assault, co-create safety plans, and receive accommodations: 519-438-7224 ext 854; email@example.com
London Police Service: 601 Dundas Street, London; 519-661-5670
Western’s Gender-based Violence & Survivor Support Case Manager, Western University: 519.551.3568 (non-emergency) or firstname.lastname@example.org, Monday-Friday during business hours
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Consent means a clear, enthusiastic, ongoing and voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activities. Consent is informed, freely given and actively communicated by words, body language or other forms of communication. It is always the responsibility of the person initiating sexual activity to ensure they have consent.
It is also important to know that someone who is incapacitated (ie. by alcohol or drugs, asleep or unconscious) is not able to consent. If you are unsure how drunk or high someone is- don't initiate sexual activity - you risk causing harm.
Understanding Coercion and Boundaries
If your relationship involves sexual activity, it is important that you and your partner(s) understand consent. Sexual boundaries are about respecting your own limitations, as well as respecting the limits of your partner(s). When someone says ‘no’ it is important to listen and not take further action. People may communicate ‘no’ in different ways, so part of respecting someone’s boundary starts with really listening to words and also body language.
Learning about others needs and boundaries as well as your own is super important for a positive sexual experience. Recognizing your level of comfort with a sexual activity and the ability to have a conversation with your partner(s) about their boundaries is key. Pressuring someone to do what you want is coercion and can cause harm.
What is gender-based and sexual violence?
Any sexual act or act targeting a person’s sexuality, gender identity and gender expression, whether the act is physical or psychological in nature. These acts may be committed or threatened or attempted against a person without the person’s consent.
These acts include:
- Sexual assault
- Sexual harassment, unwanted sexual comments or advances
- Indecent exposure
- Cyber harassment
- Sexual exploitation, selling or attempting to sell someone for sex
- Acts of violence directed against an individual because of their sexuality, regardless of the relationship to the victim
Facts about gender-based and sexual violence:
- Rape is about power and control, not sex
- There are no grey areas it’s never okay
- Clothes are not a risk factor. What someone is wearing is never an indication of anything other than their fashion choice.
- Uninvited touching and/or comments are never acceptable
- Comments directed against a person’s sexuality can be a form of sexual harassment and violence and can have a negative impact on self-esteem and well-being. This is against the law
- Just because someone buys you dinner or a drink, doesn't mean you owe them sex in return
Sexual Violence Statistics
- Across Canada, 82 per cent of all sexual assaults are perpetrated by someone the survivor knows.
- In Quebec, in 98 per cent of reported cases, the perpetrator was male.
- 70% of sexual assault survivors were assaulted in a private residence.
- Statistics Canada, 2008
- Government of Quebec, 2008 report, Statistiques sur les agressions sexuelles au Québec and the 2001 Action Plan for the setting up of governmental guidelines in the matters of sexual aggression
- Statistics Canada – no. 85-002-XIF, Catalogue, VOl. 26, No. 3 (2006).
- 1 in 3 women, 1 in 6 men will experience sexual violence at some point in their lifetime.
- Male survivors will most often have experienced sexual violence in childhood, rates are highest between age 3-14.
- Women experience sexual violence throughout their lifespan, with high rates between the ages of 18-24.
- High rates of sexual violence are also experienced by Aboriginal women, women with disabilities, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
- Statistics Canada, 2006
- Statistics Canada, 2008
According to Statistics Canada’s 2004 General Social Survey (GSS):
- About one in 10 sexual assaults is reported to police.
- There were about 512,000 incidents of sexual assault, representing a rate of 1,977 incidents per 100,000 population aged 15 and older (2004 data).
- Given that most sexual assaults go unreported, police-reported sexual assault counts are notably lower, with about 24,200 sexual offences recorded by police in 2007.
- Survivor data indicate that most sexual assaults involved unwanted sexual touching (81%).
- While few sexual assault survivors filed formal reports with police, most (72%) confided in friends and many turned to family (41%) and other informal sources of support.
- Similar to survivors of other forms of violent crime, sexual assault survivors commonly experienced anger, confusion and frustration as a result of their assault. Click here for more information.
- Most sexual assaults happen in the first eight weeks of classes.
- 50% of sexual violence cases on campus involved alcohol or other substances.
- 15 to 25% of female students3, 6.1% of male students4, and 24% of transgender, genderqueer and questioning students5 in college and university experience some form of sexual assault.
- Women who are the most vulnerable to sexual violence: women who are immigrants, visible minorities, Aboriginal and those who have a mental health condition or are disabled are 4 times at risk of sexual violence.
- Bureau de coopération interuniversitaire (2016), Le harcèlement et les violences à caractère sexuel dans le milieu universitaire, Rapport du Groupe de travail sur les politiques et procédures en matière de harcèlement et de violence sexuelle, p. 24
- University of Ottawa (2015). Report of Working Group; ABBEY et al. (2001); Cited in Intervening against sexual violence, Resource Guide for Colleges and Universities in Ontario(2013); Report from the President’s Council (2013). Promoting a culture of safety, respect and consent at St. Mary’s University and beyond.
- Developing a Response to Sexual Violence: A Resource Guide for Ontario’s Colleges and Universities, Ontario Women’s Directorate, 2013
- Krebs, C.P., Lindquist, C.H., Warner, T.D., Fisher, B.S., & Martin, S.L. (2007). The Campus Sexual Assault (CSA) Study. Washington, DC: National Institute of Justice, U.S. Department of Justice
- Cantor, D., Fisher, B., et al. (2015). Report on the AAU Campus Climate Survey on Sexual Assault and Sexual Misconduct. Rockville, Maryland: The Association of American Universities.
- Bureau de coopération interuniversitaire (2016), Le harcèlement et les violences à caractère sexuel dans le milieu universitaire, Rapport du Groupe de travail sur les politiques et procédures en matière de harcèlement et de violence sexuelle, p. 25
Where you choose to go to university is influenced by more than just what's available in your classrooms and on campus. You want to be a part of a vibrant school community that offers plenty of options for fun, while also being a safe place to live, study and play.
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