Committee shares recommendations for changing culture at Western University
Published February 8, 2022 at 12:00 pm
LONDON, Ont. — A committee at Western University has issued recommendations aimed at changing campus culture, including a requirement for all new students to complete training on gender-based and sexual violence before they arrive.
The committee was created last fall in response to heightened concerns about student safety and sexual violence at Western.
It submitted interim recommendations to Western University’s acting president Sarah Prichard that were made public yesterday.
The committee also recommends hiring more gender-based and sexual violence staff on campus and enhancing housing support staff in student residences.
It also calls on the university to provide orientation leaders and student mentors with new training to ensure they understand gender-based and sexual violence, as well as other aspects of student safety and well-being.
In September 2021, allegations surfaced on social media of mass drugging and sexual assaults at the Medway-Sydenham Hall residence on campus during orientation week.
Days later, hundreds of students walked out of classes to demand a change in what they described as a toxic campus culture.
Police later said they had received no formal complaints of sexual violence at Medway-Sydenham Hall, but that their investigation into the allegations remains open.
The committee on gender-based and sexual violence is set to submit its final report to Western University in the spring.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 8, 2022.
This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.
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