Ultimately the responsibility for preventing sexual and domestic violence is on the shoulders of those who commit the acts. A victim/survivor is never responsible. Unfortunately, you can't always avoid sexual or domestic violence. However there are things you can do to minimize the risk.
The following are some safety tips to keep in mind. This list is not exhaustive, but provides some valuable tools. If you are feeling unsafe, there are folks on and off campus who can help you understand your options and resources available. Additionally these folks can provide further safety planning strategies.
Trust your intuition and your instinct. If you are feeling unsafe or uncomfortable, you are probably right.
Know your limits; sexual and relationship wise. Be firm with your decisions and limits. Only you can define what your limits are. You have the right to say "NO" or leave at any point if you are uncomfortable or feel unsafe.
Vary your travel routines and schedule patterns. Keep information regarding where you are on a need to know basis. This information shouldn't be publicly available and easily accessed except by folks you really trust and need to know.
Keep your phone charged and on you at all times. If possible memorize emergency numbers and key contact people in the case of personal emergency. Another option would be to have important numbers written down and saved somewhere you could easily access.
Be practical and aware while you are consuming or around alcohol. Ensure that you and your friends have a plan about expectations for the party or bar and a way to get home after. Avoid assuming someone will "take care of you." It is important to go with a clear plan that all of your friends follow to keep each other safe and well.
Be aware of the privacy and personal information settings on social media, email, and other internet sites. Avoid sharing your personal information, address, phone number, and passwords. "Checking In" on sites like Facebook and Twitter and other apps can put you in danger.
Be aware of your surrounding at all times. Keep a keen eye on the people and places around you. Stay alert.
If you fear you are being abused, stalked, and/or harassed, there are resources and options for you. Documentation will be crucial in getting aid and other safety measures put in place. Contact ______ for more information.
Safety planning is a smart tool for anyone. Having a plan in place regarding how to escape, where you can stay, what to bring with you, and other important factors can be helpful in emergency or crisis situations; such as a sexual or domestic violence incident. For more information about safety planning, visit __________
General safety tips are important to keep in mind as well. Be aware of the grounds you are walking. Stay in lit areas. Stay in groups as much as possible. Lock your doors. Be wary about who you give access to your room/apartment. Be wary of strangers.
Most keen for folks is to trust your gut and your instincts and honor your feelings of safety and discomfort. If you experience sexual or domestic violence you are not to blame and resources are available.
The College of St. Scholastica
1200 Kenwood Avenue
Duluth, MN 55811