Conversations around sexual violence spike in the wake of #MeToo

Carleton is seeing an increase in discussions around sexual assault and harassment and using resources in the wake of the #MeToo movement. The #MeToo movement, created by social activist Tarana Burke and popularized on Twitter by American actress Alyssa Milano, has been credited with starting a more nuanced dialogue about sexual harassment and assault in the workplace in the wake of a wave of accusations in Hollywood, in political circles, and on social media. Holly Smith, one of the co-ordinators of the Womyn’s Centre at Carleton, said she is seeing this trend firsthand. “We are seeing a massive increase of people talking more openly [about sexual violence],” she said. While she has facilitated more peer support this semester than in […]

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Letter: Don’t understate sexual violence through partisan politics

On the evening of Jan. 25, the #MeToo movement came alive in our own backyard as allegations against Patrick Brown, the former Ontario Progressive Conservatives (PC) party leader, surfaced. We watched as his executive team members released consecutive statements that they would be resigning from positions as campaign manager, chief of staff and Ontario PC press secretary. He stood alone at the emergency press conference held at Queen’s Park in the early morning and assured the public that these allegations were “categorically untrue” and since he grew up with sisters, such claims could not be true. He then exited the building quickly, but not before telling the press, “I will be at work in the morning.” Brown then resigned a […]

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Letter: Lena Dunham continually detracts from feminist ideas

Girls creator and star Lena Dunham is no stranger to controversy. She has been finding herself in hot water since 2015, with accusations of anti-Semitism and racism, attributed to her publishing a satirical article titled “Dog or Jewish Boyfriend?” Her problematic moments continued as she made comments relating her online hate comments to domestic abuse and claims she never had the opportunity to have an abortion, but wishes she had. Dunham often proclaims herself to be a feminist, but her actions seem to lack a connection with this identity. Her latest controversy involves her defense of a colleague. On Nov. 17, actress Aurora Perrineau filed a police report accusing Girls writer Murray Miller of sexual assault. Representatives for Miller were […]

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Letter: Sexual Violence Policy criticism warrants changes now

Carleton’s Sexual Violence Policy is a product of the provincial government passing Bill 132 in 2016. The Bill outlines that all Ontario universities who receive public funding are required to develop a sexual violence policy that outlines resources available to survivors, the reporting process, and requires input from the students as well as revision at least once every three years. Although Carleton University presented many drafts of the policy and consulted with both students and staff over the policy, it was evident that it was a rush for Carleton to establish a cohesive and competent sexual assault policy by the January 2017 deadline. On Dec. 1, 2016, however, the policy was presented to and passed by the Board of Governors. […]

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Editorial: More CU staff training on sexual violence is essential

Over the past year, Carleton staff and students have been debating the changes to the university’s Sexual Violence Policy, but recent events have proven that the policy might only look good on paper.  Staff on campus must be sensitive to the issue of sexual violence as it is happening all across Ontario, including on our very own campus, with a Carleton student recently having gone public after allegedly being sexually assaulted in her dorm room over the summer.  Despite having a medical note, the student said she was unable to receive accommodation for her summer school courses. Faculty members at Carleton need to understand the importance and severity of a medical note, despite the fact that they do not have—and […]

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