Course of Action

Statistics — Sexual Assault

  • Upwards of 80 percent of female college students, who are sexually assaulted, do not report the assault.
  • College students who are victimized are far less likely to report sexual assault than non-student victims.
  • When asked later about what happened to them, most students do not relay their reasons for not reporting to police.
  • Nearly 50 percent of students not reporting sexual assault crimes opted not to do so for "other reasons" or because they viewed the occurrence of the crime as a "personal matter."
  • 20 percent of students did not report due to "fear of reprisal."

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    Fear of Reprisal and Personal Matters FAQs

    If a student does not contact local police or the Department of Public Safety on campus to report an attempted or completed sexual assault, what's the point in sharing this type of sensitive information with the Title IX coordinator?

    It is very important for the Title IX coordinator to know what is going on and to receive accurate information for many reasons, not the least of which is concern for your present and future welfare. This applies to the person who reports a potential assault and the person who reportedly completed or attempted to complete a sexual assault.

    Fear of reprisal or retaliation is as real as everything else being described here. After all, I'm the one who can be hurt over and over again by retaliation.

    This is one of the many reasons it is so important to reach out to the Title IX coordinator or a deputy Title IX coordinator. It is best to do so as quickly as possible to help protect against retaliation and this includes friends of the student whose conduct is being reported.

    It's a personal matter really. I don't feel very comfortable talking about this type of thing.

    The job of the Title IX Coordinator is to help create and maintain a safe learning environment for students. This is difficult to do if knowledge and information about painful experiences is not shared with the Title IX coordinator or a confidential employee (licensed therapist). It is tough to share sensitive information about your own life. We all tend to think "it can't happen to me" until after something has happened or is happening. The reality is that difficult and painful experiences do occur. Acting as if they did not occur makes it very difficult for you to make healthy(ier) or different choices in the future. This is frequently true for the other person(s) involved.

    So, if I file a report with the Title IX coordinator, will I end up having to speak with the police or public safety?

    Absolutely not. It is always your choice whether to talk with a police or public safety officer. The criminal court system is very different than Title IX investigations and procedure which do not result in criminal responsibility.

    I can take care of myself. It's my roommate that concerns me. S/he asks me to look out for her at parties and on weekends but I would like to be able to enjoy myself without having to wonder what will happen next to my roommate.

    Yes, when students do not disclose or report sexual assaults to the Title IX Coordinator, any of the deputy Title IX Coordinators, the cycle of unhealthy relationships and connections is likely to continue to gain momentum and even spiral out of control. You can help yourself and your roommate by remembering that there is more than one course of action that may be taken.