King's new Safe Campus policy on sexual violence prevention
King’s University College Board of Directors has unanimously approved and enacted a new sexual violence policy aimed at creating clear procedures and support for the entire King’s community. The policy is for the safety of students, staff, faculty, volunteers and visitors to campus. The new standalone policy is in addition to the Student Code of Conduct, the Workplace Violence Policy and the Workplace Harassment, Sexual Harassment and Discrimination Policy. It was developed after an extensive community consultation process and it is in alignment with the Ontario Human Rights Code, and the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act.
“All of us at King’s are united in preventing sexual violence in any form to any member of the community. This policy provides a framework of safety on campus and it outlines an important reporting and support system. We do not tolerate sexual violence towards, or by, our students, staff, faculty or any member of the King’s community,” says Dr. David Sylvester, King’s Principal. “We will be providing training to those in our community who may receive a report of sexual violence from another community member. As well, this policy sets in place procedures to support victims and for those who want to support victims.”
King’s has created new content on its website for the policy and other safety resources/policies which can be found: www.kings.uwo.ca/safecampus/. In 2017, training of faculty and staff will be undertaken. This puts King’s in compliance with new provincial legislation.
Earlier this year, the Ontario government passed Bill 132, the Sexual Violence and Harassment Action Plan Act, which will sanction requirements for workplaces, campuses and communities to address sexual violence and harassment.
Among its requirements, the Act requires publicly assisted post-secondary institutions to have their own standalone sexual violence policy that would undergo a review every three years. The deadline for the implementation of college and university sexual assault policies is Jan. 1, 2017.