News

Women’s Center Works to Prevent and Raise Awareness of Sexual Violence

July 25, 2014
Elizabeth City State University

Universities across the nation have become focal points in the fight against sexual violence. The Obama Administration earlier this year established the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault with orders to strengthen federal enforcement efforts and provide schools with additional tools to combat sexual assault on their campuses.

Sexual violence prevention and awareness initiatives at Elizabeth City State University are administered through the university’s Women’s Center. The new director of the center is preparing for fall semester activities now. “Broadly speaking, the goal is to prevent and reduce sexual violence on the university’s campus. That’s to raise awareness and also to make people understand how to prevent violence, and that includes stalking, domestic violence, dating violence and sexual assault,” said Kathryn Gigler, the center’s director.

The Women’s Center is funded by a three-year, renewable grant from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women. The center is responsible for initiatives including the founding of the Albemarle region’s first LGBTQ organization, bystander intervention training for students, staff and faculty, the Vikings Against Violence website and program and the education of judicial and law enforcement agencies on best practices for handling cases of sexual violence. 

Among the center’s first on-campus events last spring was bystander intervention training, which provides strategies for safely intervening in situations that seem unsafe.

Learn more about ECSU's Women's Center.