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Sexual violence policy approved

Queen’s University’s policy on sexual violence has been approved by its Board of Trustees  

“Queen’s takes sexual violence very seriously, and I am pleased that the policy has received full endorsement from the Board of Trustees,” says Daniel Woolf, Principal and Vice-Chancellor. “I would like to thank the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Working Group (SAPRWG), the Implementation Team on Prevention and Response to Sexual Violence and all those who provided feedback for their dedication to this issue.”

The development of the policy was an iterative process and involved extensive consultation with campus stakeholders. Student involvement, a requirement of the Ontario government’s proposed sexual violence legislation, Bill 132, has been considerable, and has included student representatives on both the working group and the implementation team.

"I am very pleased to see that the Board has chosen to adopt the proposed policy. Sexual violence is an undeniable reality. A dedicated policy on sexual violence is an important step in promoting a cultural shift within university campuses. However, our work must not stop here. Students, faculty and staff all have a role to play in ending sexual violence. I look forward to seeing the positive impact this policy will have in the years to come,” says Clare Gummo, Assistant Director of the Sexual Health Resource Centre and a student representative on the Implementation Team on Prevention and Response to Sexual Violence.

The policy aligns with the province’s proposed legislation as it is currently drafted, as well as with recommendations from the working group, input from the implementation team, and best practices across the sector. Depending on the final version of the legislation and accompanying regulations, modifications to the policy may be necessary.

“We do not yet have either the final version of the provincial legislation or the accompanying regulations,” says Alan Harrison, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic). “Given our commitment to this issue, we felt that it was nonetheless important to proceed with the approval of our policy so that the university has a policy and process in place to support students.”

The policy outlines the options that are available to anyone who has witnessed or experienced sexual violence and the university’s responsibilities relating to awareness, education, training and reporting.

The university is working on several initiatives with respect to sexual violence and prevention. Hiring is underway for a new dedicated Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Coordinator, who will be the central point of contact for students, staff and faculty and will lead campus-wide education, response, support, training and advocacy activities. There are many resources, services and supports available on campus and in the community. For more information, read the full policy here visit the university’s sexual violence information and resource web page.