harassment (sexual misconduct) Prevention
Tips for preventing harassment (sexual misconduct)
We all have a part to play in the fight against sexual and relationship violence. The following are some things to keep in mind as you interact with peers or sexual/romantic partners.
- Always ask first. Listen for your partner’s response, and take both verbal and nonverbal signs of reluctance or refusal seriously. If the response is not clear, ask again. Mixed messages from your partner are a clear indication that you should stop and talk about it. You have a responsibility to respect your partner's timeline for sexual activities with which they are comfortable.
- Respect the wishes of the person you are interacting with. Even if the person you are with initially gives permission, consent can be withdrawn at any time.
- Remember that prior sexual activity does not equal future consent. Consent must be obtained during every encounter and for every sexual act.
- Realize that drugs and alcohol are no excuse to have sex. Alcohol and other drugs impair judgment and communication, making it difficult to obtain consent. Additionally, it is against the law to engage in sexual activity with someone who is incapacitated or incapable of saying “no.”
- Trust your instincts. If you are uncomfortable or sense that you are in danger, leave as soon as you are able. In an emergency, you should always call 911.
- Be a role model and engage respectfully with others in the Arkansas Tech University community. Set high standards for your friend group and the larger University community, and model the conduct you expect from others.
- Be an leader. If you see concerning behavior, don’t be afraid to intervene if it is safe to do so, and don’t be afraid to contact Public Safety to assist. Speak out against harmful stereotypes and behaviors in conversations with peers and offer help to community members who may need it.
- Some students have a more difficult time reading social cues than others. If you are one of these people, it might be important that you rely less on non-verbal cues and practice good verbal communication with your peer or sexual/romantic partner. If you think that you need to improve your communication skills, consider getting connected with Counseling and Disability Services.