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Tuesday, February 7, 2017

PITT-BRADFORD RECEIVES STATE GRANT TO PROMOTE SEXUAL ASSAULT AWARENESS AND REPORTING

BRADFORD, Pa. – The University of Pittsburgh at Bradford has received an “It’s on Us PA” grant for $28,642 from Gov. Tom Wolf’s office to further promote awareness and prevent sexual assault.

Pitt-Bradford was one of 36 postsecondary institutions in Pennsylvania chosen to receive a grant.

Pitt-Bradford will use its grant for four programs, explained Christy Clark, executive assistant to the president and Title IX liaison/affirmative action officer. Title IX is a federal court ruling that requires campuses have procedures for handling sexual misconduct and assault complaints.

To help students report sexual assault anonymously, the campus has used the grant to purchase a smartphone application that will allow students to quickly and confidentially report sexual misconduct or violence. The app will be available to students later this month.

Other programs will help to raise awareness in conjunction with the campus’s Sexual Assault Awareness Committee, which was created during the 2014-15 academic year to enhance and increase programming so students had the tools to help them make good choices and stay safe.

During the week of Feb. 13-18, Pitt-Bradford will take part in The Red Flag Campaign, which encourages friends and other members of the campus community to “say something” when they see warning signs (red flags) for dating violence and sexual assault.

Students will write warning signs on actual red flags, which will be displayed on campus throughout the week. The men’s and women’s home basketball games Feb. 18 will also promote awareness of red flags.

In April, the grant will support a speaker for the campus’s annual “Take Back the Night” observance, Sofie Karasek. Karasek is one of the subjects of the documentary “The Hunting Ground.” Karasek is now the education director of End Rape on Campus, a nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C.

Finally, Pitt-Bradford will take part in the One in Four program, which provides programming targeted toward educating college-age students about sexual assault.

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