The University Police Department is urging students to keep in mind the following safety tips to help avoid situations in which sexual assault may occur. Lt. Jef Rice said in the statement some things may be out of a student’s control, but that there are things that can be done can do to keep people safe.
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Below are the tips:
- If you’re going on a first or blind date, go with friends and /or to a public place, such as a restaurant.
- Make sure your cell phone is charged.
- Always be aware alcohol and drugs can impair your judgment and ability to make clear decisions. They also lower your sexual inhibitions.
- Keep your drink with you at all times if you’re at a bar or party. Don’t accept open drinks for people you don’t know or trust.
- Know your sexual limits. You have a right to say “no.” Communicate your limits firmly and directly.
- Follow your intuitions. If a situation seem suspicious or you sense you might be in danger, leave immediately and go to a safe place.
- Talk to your friends, agree to look out for each other. Let them know if you plan on leaving with someone, where you are going, and when you’ll be back.
Equally important as protecting yourself is protecting others. Be an active bystander. For example:
- If you think someone is at risk for sexual assault consider it an emergency and get involved. Don’t wait for someone else to act.
- When intervening:
- Approach everyone as a friend.
- Be honest and direct.
- Don’t be aggressive or use violence.
- Keep yourself safe.
- Get help for other bystanders, if necessary.
- Call the police if a situation becomes too serious.