College campuses across the country are launching programs to combat the growing epidemic of sexual misconduct.
BYU-Idaho is launching a Title IX website to help students know what to do and where to go if they or someone they know has been a victim of sexual assault.
“Title IX is a comprehensive federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded education program or activity,” according to the Department of Justice.
Associate Dean of Students Nick Rammell said the BYU-I Title IX website is part of an effort to bring awareness to the issues of sexual misconduct.
“The website has been designed and we are currently developing content,” Rammell said. “My anticipation is that the website will be live by the end of this semester.”
More than 50 percent of women who are raped while attending college never report it, according to Campus Safety magazine.
“It is common for a victim to be really apprehensive to make a report of seek help,” Rammell said. “I’ve met with a number of students that were victimized over a year ago, and they have said little or nothing about the incident prior to coming.”
Rammell said the website will provide a place for concerned parties to make a report and find contact information for the Title IX coordinators and other available resources.
He said the website will also have links to BYU-I’s Sexual Misconduct Policy and trainings pertaining to it.
“Some of that’s prescribed by law, but there will be a portion of the training that is specific to BYU-I,” Rammell said. “President Faust once taught that there is great risk in justifying what we do on the basis of what is legal rather than what is right. This is a special place and the Lord expects much from those that are blessed to be here, so we expect more from our faculty, staff and students.”
He said there will be a module, or online course, that explains what someone can do if they have been a victim of sexual misconduct.
“There will also be a module that discusses ways to be an engaged bystander,” Rammell said. “We need everybody’s efforts to avoid these types of incidents within our campus community.”
He said colleges and universities are required to have a Title IX coordinator. BYU-I has three coordinators.
“For victims of sexual misconduct and the safety of the greater campus community, the university is committed to stop, prevent and remedy any reported acts of sexual misconduct,” Rammell said.
Rammell said it is difficult to know exactly what kind of help a victim of sexual assault needs because everybody deals with trauma differently.
“It depends, in part, on a victim’s past experiences, the trauma, their ability to deal with trauma and the resources available to them—both internally and externally, including roommates, family support and concerned friends,” Rammell said. “That is all going to play into what resources they are going to need from the university.”
Rammell said his experience has shown him that in most cases, victims just need someone to talk to; someone that will listen without being judgmental.
Rammell said anyone can always go to his office in the Spencer W. Kimball Student and Administrative Services building, room 290. He said if they need anything, they can call him at 208-496-9209 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.