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Harrowing sexual assault report shows our university students deserve better

Media Release
Sarah Hanson-Young 1 Aug 2017

The Australian Greens are urging the Federal Government to assist universities in implementing the recommendations from the Australian Human Rights Commission’s report into sexual assault and harassment on university campuses.

“This report paints an ugly picture of what life on campus is for too many young women. Every student deserves to be able to study and learn in a safe, respectful environment. Our universities must act,” Greens higher education spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

“The Greens acknowledge the bravery of sexual assault survivors for driving the campaign to shine a light on the prevalence of sexual assaults on campus, and thank the students who spoke out in the survey. The results are staggering, but not surprising to those tireless campaigners who have strived to hold their universities to account.”

“Regular reporting is needed not only to monitor university action on these recommendations, but to continue to shine a light on the dark places in our universities where a toxic culture of sexual assault and harassment thrives.

“Every student has the right to feel safe and go to university without fear of a fellow student or teacher assaulting or harassing them while they’re in a vulnerable transition into adulthood and independence.

“The Federal Government can’t simply leave this to universities to solve; it needs to be part of the solution and take this grave issue seriously. The survivors of sexual assault, those students who feel trapped in classrooms with their perpetrators or who drop out because they feel too unsafe to continue their studies, deserve better from their universities, the government, and the community.”

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