Support Survivors


points to consider when reminded of the rolling stone piece on UVA

In light of the blowback from the 2014 Rolling Stone article alleging sexual violence at the University of Virginia, the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC) reminds us that "high-profile cases in the media are an important opportunity to educate the public about the realities of sexual assault. Specifics of each case are different, but our role as advocates is always to support survivors and help everyone understand sexual violence." They highlight three main points:

  1. Sexual assault impacts campuses across the U.S.
  2. Trauma impacts memory.
  3. Resources are available to help reporters write about this topic, such as NSVRC's media packet for journalists, Engaging Bystanders.  Read more here.


institutional betrayal

Faculty Against Rape advisory board member Jennifer J. Freyd (Professor of Psychology, University of Oregon) and her colleague Carly Parnitzke Smith developed the idea of Institutional Betrayal, which they describe as "institutional action and inaction that exacerbate the impact of traumatic experiences." In other words, college students often experience institutional betrayal when their institution of higher education fails to prevent sexual assault or to respond supportively, exacerbating PTSD-symptoms. Many students report that the institutional betrayal they experience-- often forms of victim-blaming and slut-shaming-- can be more traumatic than the act of sexual violence alone. Read more here. And here.