WU Students for Change: Campus Safety Demands
WU Students for Change: Campus Safety Demands
This is a list of demands for Winthrop University by WU Students for Change. These demands are in subcategories organized by topic, but are all equally important and relevant to student safety. The university’s mishandling of Title IX cases, an inaccessible campus, discriminatory practices, and inadequate campus and housing safety are all problems that need to be addressed.
WU Students for Change was established in April 2021 and has pushed for tangible changes on campus. These efforts have led to the establishment of a new position dedicated specifically to Title IX, new staff to handle investigation processes, and new facilities projects to address accessibility concerns, all which have contributed to greater awareness of these issues. However, there is still so much work to be done to create a better, safer campus. For that reason, we have created these demands:
We demand all persons or organizations accused of committing or abetting sexual assault, abuse, and misconduct against the student body at Winthrop University be named, properly investigated, and terminated from their positions.
We demand that Winthrop University increase funding for the Office of Victim’s Assistance (OVA) and increase the visibility and accessibility of the OVA for all, including survivors of sexual assault, abuse, and misconduct. Winthrop University should better protect these students by establishing and enforcing clear and efficient policies.
To ensure accountability, OVA staff members should be subject to routine performance reviews conducted by a third party auditor. Winthrop’s administration will play NO role in the hiring, firing, or oversight of OVA staff.
We demand reformed sexual assault/campus safety training for students and staff. The current Campus Safety Program relies on ideas that perpetuate negative stereotypes about sexual assault, and this must be addressed immediately.
We demand that Winthrop University remove Vice President Kimberly Faust from any involvement in Title IX, such as having the new Title IX Coordinator report to her. These roles must be completely separated in order for the position to properly serve survivors.
We demand that Miranda Knight be terminated from her role as Assistant Dean of Students for her abhorrent victim-blaming. Similarly, we demand that Anthony Davis be terminated as interim Dean of Students for violating federal law and conducting a biased investigation.
We demand that a third party conducts an annual student climate survey that is published annually by Winthrop University, alongside the Clery Report, in order to give students a more accurate perspective of student safety on campus.
We demand a zero-tolerance policy for staff, faculty, students, and student organizations who commit sexual assault or misconduct, stalking, and/or perpetuate rape culture on and off-campus.
We demand that Winthrop University documents a plan to maintain and update campus infrastructure and policies to better include students with disabilities and other vulnerable student populations.
We demand that academic accommodations be made more accessible than the standards currently in place, which puts students at the mercy of staff and professors who might not be equipped with enough empathy to adequately manage their concerns.
We demand a proactive maintenance system be put in place to address accessibility and/or safety issues by which affected students can voice their concerns in a timely and safe manner so that potential issues do not go unchecked.
We demand all University faculty and staff, including resident assistants and residential learning coordinators, be fair and unbiased in an effort to treat all students including minorities fairly.
Students should have the right to feel safe and respected in their place of residence as well as in their academics.
We demand that all campus buildings named after figures who perpetuate racism and violence against people of color be changed.
These figures such as Benjamin Tillman and Strom Thurmond should not be immortalized on our buildings, and it only perpetuates and enables racism which in turn places the safety of people of color at risk.
We demand that Winthrop remove the quote by Geoffrey Chaucer from the Kinard Building because of his problematic history and accusations of rape.
We demand that the university change its definition of rape to a more inclusive one such as the example provided by the Department of Justice.
As it stands, this definition disempowers queer, trans, and male survivors.
We demand safer parking closer to residence halls so that students won’t be forced to walk long distances to their dorms in the dark. We also demand that WUPO stop issuing parking tickets to students who park on campus until these campus safety issues are resolved.
We demand functioning blue lights and the installation of security cameras at each outdoor emergency pole in addition to adding more security cameras across campus.
We demand that Winthrop University expand its mental health resources, including the onboarding of better, more inclusive, and more sensitive therapists and counselors in the Health and Counseling department, to ensure that students have access to the care they need.
Students shouldn’t be waiting months for counseling appointments.
We demand that the school immediately address the health risks posed by the widespread growth of mold in the dorms. We also demand that the university hire a third party to inspect each residence hall and campus building to assess other potential health risks.
We demand that each dorm room have ID-swipe access to ensure an added safeguard against trespassing and unwanted visitors.
We demand that Winthrop University employ 24/7 desk hosts in each residence hall to ensure the safety of student residents.
We demand that Winthrop University remove the two-year requirement that students live on campus and purchase meal plans until they have properly addressed the safety risks listed above.
We hope that Winthrop University will listen to these important student safety concerns and work towards creating a better campus for all students regardless of personal background or experience.