Resolution passed in effort to support sexual assault survivors at Mason
BY DANA NICKEL, NEWS EDITOR
On Thursday, March 28, Mason’s Student Government passed the Resolution to Support a Better, Safer Mason (Res. 49). Res. 49, introduced by Elijah Nichols, a student senator, officially states Student Government’s support of sexual assault and sexual harassment survivors at Mason.
The resolution states, “George Mason Student Government believes that some appropriate actions would include … the reshaping of the campus Title IX policy around survivors, clarifying the housing policies regarding students who commit sexual assault or sexual harassment with their ability to access on-campus housing, ensuring all faculty/staff sign and are held accountable to the sexual assault prevention pledge, [and] the funding of programs that better the mental health of students at George Mason University.”
Additionally, Res. 49 calls for more accessibility for students to obtain free rape kits and free STI testing, as well as more staff in Mason’s Title IX office and greater accountability in Mason’s police department.
It also calls for a written statement from Mason’s administration to the student body explaining what Mason has done and is planning to do to combat sexual assault, sexual harassment and sexual violence.
Nichols explained the importance of Res. 49 to Fourth Estate: “As a survivor of sexual assault, I feel as if the university administration is taking a stance of standing with predators rather than survivors.”
He continued, “I knew that it was out of respect for … many at our university that I had to put up this resolution, [in] which I urged the university to take what seems to be just the bare minimum of appropriate actions.”
Nichols is confident that now that Res. 49 has passed, the people who voted in favor of it “will be pushing the university on these necessary changes.”