A Supergroup Of Academics Is Trying To Stop People Who Profit From Campus Rape

Jennifer Freyd, a longtime researcher and advocate against sexual violence, has been pleased to see so much focus in recent years on campus rape. But the University of Oregon psychology professor has also been worried.

As a record number of universities have come under federal investigations for allegations they mishandled rape and harassment cases, it seemed like every week a new app, consulting group, conference or educational program cropped up to help colleges improve their responses to sexual assault — as long as the schools were willing to pay a price. In some cases, including at UO, Freyd said, schools would rather spend close to six figures on a product that promised to address the problem than engage with faculty to devise their own program.

“I am very concerned about the profiteering going on,” Freyd told The Huffington Post. “I don’t think people should be making businesses out of responding to college sexual assault and getting rich off it. It strikes me as very dangerous — as soon as you have a profit motive in there, it’s risked to corrupting. You should not get rich over people getting raped.”

Rather than sit idly by, Freyd and a group of 22 administrators and researchers have quietly been meeting to take matters into their own hands. The result is a group called the Administrator Researcher Campus Climate Consortium, or ARC3.

This week, ARC3 plans to release a campus climate survey online that any college can use free of charge. This survey can help assess how many students experience sexual assault and harassment, as well as their perceptions of how their school handles these issues. Getting a better understanding on those things can help a school be proactive and even prevent students from being raped in the first —> Read More