British Columbia

UBC student society using coffee cups to raise awareness of sexual assaults on campus

UBC's student society has launched a campaign to encourage students to provide feedback of the university's proposed new sexual assault policy.

Coffee sleeves encouraging students to provide feedback during review of new UBC sexual assault policy

UBC's Alma Mater Society has launched a coffee sleeve campaign to encourage students to provide feedback of the university's proposed new sexual assault policy. (Michelle Huang/Twitter)

Between 2004-2014, UBC suspended 257 students for cheating or plagiarism, according to the Alma Mater Society. 

For sexual assault, that number is zero. The statistic is now emblazoned on coffee sleeves across campus, in an effort to encourage students to provide feedback on UBC's new sexual assault policy.

"This a campaign that we launched last week," said Kathleen Simpson, VP of External Affairs at the AMS.

"Basically our intention is to draw attention to the fact the non-academic conduct policy at UBC is not very well suited to dealing with sexual violence on campus."

The university unveiled a draft policy in June, after a number of complaints the current policy isn't clear. 

"The number one recommendation that we have is that we want the new policy to have a new process for reporting that is outside of the non-academic misconduct procedure," said Simpson.

"Since we feel that [current] procedure is not suited to sexual violence and also has not really been a safe place for survivors."

Through the current process, "A survivor may have to retell their story in front of other students or come face to face with their perpetrator. Other, more appropriate, reporting processes should be considered as options," explains a written AMS statement.

The university is accepting feedback until September 30.

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Bal Brach

@BalBrach

Bal Brach is an award-winning reporter at CBC News Vancouver. She has worked in television, radio and online news across Canada for more than 15 years. Bal's storytelling skills have earned her two Jack Webster Awards. She is also the recipient of regional and national Radio Television Digital News Association awards. Bal can be reached at Bal.Brach@cbc.ca or on social media @BalBrach

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