Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Vol. CLIV, Issue 4
Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Be the green dot: Whitman launches new sexual assault program

The Green Dot campaign is Whitman’s newest tool to prevent sexual assault.  

“A green dot is any behavior that makes our campus safer,” said Barbara Maxwell, Associate Dean of Students for Student Programs and Activities.

Green dots are positive actions that fight negative behavior, which is represented by red dots. Red dot behavior includes sexual assault and interpersonal violence.  

“We also label a red dot as any behavior that ignores, justifies, or perpetuates [sexual assault],” said Maxwell.  

Maxwell and involved students tabled in Reid last week to raise awareness about the Green Dot program. Junior Jacqueline Kamm, a member of the Sexual Assault Advisory Board and one of the students promoting the campaign, emphasized the accessibility of the new program.

“You can be an ally against sexual assault or sexual violence on the smallest level or the largest level,” said Kamm.  

Maxwell also stressed the wide reach of the Green Dot initiative, calling it a “bystander intervention program.”

 “It’s geared toward making the community active in prevention behaviors,” she said.  

As co-chair of the Washington Sexual Violence Prevention College Coalition, Maxwell helped choose the Green Dot program as a prevention initiative for associated schools. Other colleges and universities in the coalition include Eastern Washington University, Gonzaga University, the Evergreen State College, Pacific Lutheran University and the University of Washington.  

Dr. Dorothy Edwards started the Green Dot initiative at the University of Kentucky. The program’s success prompted the state of Kentucky to adopt the campaign, too. The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga also uses the system.

Maxwell will attend Edwards’ Green Dot training session from May 26 to May 28 in Seattle along with Juli Dunn, the director of academic resources, Adam Kirtley, the Stuart Coordinator of Religious and Spiritual Life, and Sean Gehrke, the Assistant Director of Residence Life and Housing.  

Maxwell and the rest of the attendants will learn how to train students to intervene effectively in a situation of sexual assault.  

“It has to be safe for the person who’s going to try to intervene in that situation and then ultimately you want it to be effective,” said Maxwell.

For more information about the Green Dot initiative, visit greendotkentucky.com.

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