College students across the U.S. staged socially distanced protests this week against sexual assault on campuses, such as Boston University and Minnesota State University, CBS News reported.
The protests – organized by University Survivors Movement (USM), an international organization of student activists against sexual assault on campuses – were meant to be COVID-safe through flyers and messages instead of in-person gatherings and had the participation of activists from at least 17 schools.
“BU has a rape problem,” read signs at the Boston University campus.
“After I was raped, I was so afraid to simply walk around campus,” was written in chalk on a Gettysburg College campus pathway.
More than 25% of undergraduate female students and 1 in 15 undergraduate male students experience sexual assault or rape through physical force, incapacitation or violence while in college, according to advocacy group RAINN.
The COVID-19 pandemic has shown to be another complication keeping survivors from finding help and justice, USM organizer and Brown University student Carter Woodruff said.
“During COVID… campuses have been able to further de-prioritize those means of accessibility that are so necessary to reach survivors that need help,” she said.
The National Sexual Assault Hotline can be reached at 1-800-656-HOPE. Online help is available at online.rainn.org.