Erasmus University Rotterdam to Suspend Suspects of Sexual Crimes from Education
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Did you know that 27% of women have experienced non-consensual sexual contact during their time studying at university?
Hi, my name is Cece, a Bachelor student at Erasmus University, and I'm one among this 27%. I'm thus petitioning the university to take immediate action in order to guarantee on-campus safety for victims of sexual crimes like myself, namely by suspending the education of the offender until there is a verdict from court.
In January 2017, I was molested by a fellow student (X) from the same study (International Bachelor of Communication and Media). After I made my story public on Facebook, X sent me an email to show his remorse, and stated that he was considering dropping out from the study by the next year. Because of this, and because he had been a close friend before, I decided to put the incident behind me. However, as the next academic year approached, X was still enrolled as an IBCoM student.
For another four months, I went to university in fear of running into him; and went through numerous anxiety attacks every course registration period, for fear him and I would end up in the same class. I decided that I couldn't deal with this anymore, and sought help from Student Advisors. The student advisors later directed me to the Dean of Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication. I was informed that the university could not do anything about my case, other than ensuring in their system that X and I would not be registered in the same class. I was also advised to reach out to law enforcement officials, which I did on Feb 21st, 2018.
After speaking on the phone with an officer from Vice Front-Office of Rotterdam, I decided to formally press charges. The following five months were comprised of multiple appointments with the police for questioning and collecting evidence; along with countless visits to the Help Center for Victims and the school's psychologist in order to stabilize my mental health.
In August, I went on exchange to South Korea; and on the 24th I was informed by my sister that X's family came to my home in Vietnam in an attempt to coerce me into dropping charges against him.
Since February 2019, I've been back in Rotterdam to continue my study. This term, IBCoM has a course with mandatory lectures, which means that both X and I have to be present, and sit in the same lecture hall. It was harder than I thought it would be to deal with the anxiety inflicted by this situation, so I reached out to the Student Advisor once more. Unfortunately, again, no solutions could adequately offered me safety on campus.
Since it will take the prosecutor office at least six more months to process my case, I strongly urge Erasmus University Rotterdam to immediately suspend the education of X at the university until a decision has been made by the Judge. In order to make this appeal compelling to the utmost, I need your support by signing this petition, and sharing it with your friends. Every signature counts.
Thank you so much for taking your time to listen to my story and helping me achieve justice and peace of mind. Moreover, I hope this will open up the discussion of sexual misconducts on our campus, and draw attention to the safety and well-being of all our students.
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