By: Amanda Parisse and Ali Gorson-Morrow
In the past few months, there has been an increase in sexual assaults from the dating apps, Tinder and Grindr involving Goucher students. Due to this safety concern, Goucher’s Public Safety Director David Heffer sent out an email regarding increased sexual assaults that had occurred outside the college campus. Although none of these assaults occurred on campus, the victims were affiliated with Goucher.
In response to the assaults, Public Safety has “banned the offending individuals from campus.” David Heffer explained that “Goucher College Public Safety typically bans non-affiliated individuals who have been held responsible for assaulting/harassing any Goucher students.” If any of these individuals are found on campus they will be arrested.
In order to promote a safe environment, Public Safety is willing to have their office become a “safe space for meeting individuals you have met online,” in order to decrease the chance for an unsafe situation to arise.
Heffer also advised students to use the Gopher Help app to let your friends and family know where you are through its “friend watch” function. When meeting someone from a dating app, it was advised to always meet in a public place, provide friends with details about who you are meeting, not to leave your drink unattended and get their real name.
Lucia Perfetti Clark, Goucher’s Title IX Coordinator, said that the majority of college campuses in America have seen an increase in sexual assaults due to meetups from Tinder and Grindr. Clark and Heffer both stressed the importance of being safe on these kinds of dates while still knowing that any sexual assault that occurs is not your fault.
Additionally, Ms. Clark mentioned that one in four students would experience being sexually assaulted during their four years in college. For the LGBTQIA community, the odds are 1 in 16, although that does not in any way mean they are less at risk of being sexually assaulted.
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