Savannah Badalich: Changing the Discussion on Sexual Assault

Savannah Badalich: Changing the Discussion on Sexual Assault

I read an article in the Washington Post that really stuck out to me. It can be found here.

The article is about Savannah Badalich, who was sexually assaulted by a friend at a student government conference two weeks into her second year at UCLA. Savannah has also shared her story with the Huffington post. 

Since this event, Savannah has been working tirelessly to end sexual violence, and to incite policy changes for universities and colleges in California, and the rest of the United States.

She has been meeting with social and political groups, such as End Rape on Campus, Know Your IX (referring to a federal law that prohibits gender bias), One Less, and Stand Up. These groups are the engine for Take Back the Night, Consent Week, the Clothesline Project, Project Unbreakable, It Happens Here, the Red Flag Campaign, and other events and programs that reflect a demand for a cultural shift in attitudes toward sexual violence. Please check out these campaigns and get involved if they speak to you!

“The approach, Badalich said, was to seek cooperation rather than confrontation. When she met with fraternity leaders, she said, she was careful to avoid saying anything that would create the impression that she had prejudged them. “If you go into a community and tell a community how to act,” she said, “they’re going to be pissed off.”

This really gets tot he point that these campaigns are not created to hate on men, or to “out” rapists. The hope is to spread awareness that sexual assault happens here, and incite changes at the policy and legislation levels.

All of Savannah’s hard work paid off when…

In September, Gov. Jerry Brown (D) signed the groundbreaking law that requires colleges to adopt an affirmative-consent standard for student conduct cases involving sex. The “yes means yes” law drew national attention to the principle that consent is valid only if it is “affirmative, conscious and voluntary.”

Now it’s time for the rest of the country to step up to the plate!

There is definitely some heat on North American colleges and universities. There is a human rights violation complaint against York University right now, and Kathleen Wynne is working on new legislation in Ontario that will make it mandatory for post-secondary institutions to have clear sexual assault reporting procedures. We are slowly making progress!

Hats off from the When You’re Ready team to Savannah Badalich for her strength, courage, perseverance, and ambition.

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Hi! I'm Elizabeth, a blogger on When You're I spent 2 years struggling with PTSD and panic attacks following a violent attack. I want to use my experience and my voice to raise support for others. I desperately want to make the world a safer place for girls and women, especially my two little sisters. Keep talking, Keep sharing. When You're Ready, I'll be here.



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