Statement by Gender Neutral BU
The following is a statement on behalf of the Center for Gender, Sexuality and Activism, the Boston University Student Government, and their student, faculty, administrative, parent, and alumni supporters. This statement is in response to the administration’s recent decision to indefinitely halt the Student Government proposal to implement Gender Neutral Housing at Boston University. This action represents a deliberate violation of the commitments made by administration officials to implement Gender Neutral Housing as an option for students by Fall 2013.
The Student Government went through the appropriate channels to plan and submit this proposal. After many revisions in coordination with Boston University Residence Life, and taking into consideration survey responses from over one thousand Boston University students, the plan was passed in Spring of 2012 by the Boston University Student Government Senate. The Senate is the main instrument of the student voice; it includes representatives from the Pan-Hellenic Council, Interfraternity Council, individual college governments and each residence hall.
After the proposal passed, Student Government held countless meetings with administrative officials from Housing, Residence Life, and the Dean of Students Office to facilitate the implementation of the plan. During the summer, the Dean of Students Office gave multiple verbal confirmations that Gender Neutral Housing was slated for Fall of 2013. Student Government was then given permission to publicize the plan’s approval at the beginning of the fall term. The plan was moderate in its requests and respectful of administrative concerns; it called for the gradual five-year implementation of Gender Neutral Housing. Despite these efforts, Student Government received notification from the Dean of Students Office during Fall Recess that the plans for Gender Neutral Housing had been indefinitely postponed.
We students have created a united front – “Gender Neutral BU” – and we are advocating for the Gender Neutral Housing plan that was promised. We are disappointed that the administration has determined that Gender Neutral Housing is not a priority on their current housing agenda. The collective voice of the student body has been silenced. We understand the importance of other initiatives being undertaken by the University but it is unacceptable to disregard student priorities. We are asking the administration to publicly affirm their commitment to the implementation of Gender Neutral Housing at Boston University in Fall of 2013. This is necessary for a campus that is safe and inclusive for all students.
Sign the petition here
PRESIDENT BROWN ANNOUNCES ESTABLISHMENT OF
SEXUAL ASSAULT PREVENTION AND RESPONSE CENTER AT BOSTON UNIVERSITY
BOSTON, May 3– Boston University President Robert A. Brown announced via email Monday
morning the establishment of a center dedicated to preventing and responding to sexual assault on
campus. The center is expected to be operational by the beginning of the 2012-2013 school year.
The CGSA is proud to be part of an institution that takes sexual assault and interpersonal violence
seriously. In creating this center, Boston University is proving its commitment to student safety and
wellbeing and is a true leader among higher education institutions.
The CGSA would like to recognize the group of dedicated students who worked tirelessly in
drafting a detailed proposal of the sexual assault prevention office. This 30 page proposal included
a comprehensive plan for the implementation of this center, including: staffing guides, roles of
counselors, medical services, judicial proceedings and relationship to the BU Police Department, a
projected budget and timeline. More
Join the campaign! Add your voice to our online petition by clicking the link and writing a few sentences about why you support a rape crisis center at BU.
In light of recent events, the establishment of a rape crisis center at Boston University is fitting and necessary at the university. This center would include a physical space, paid employees for both counseling and preventive work, and a budget to do outreach on campus and education programming for both students and staff. A rape crisis center would help Boston University to better serve its students by providing them with tools to prevent and cope with sexual assault crises, and to lead the way in providing a safe and healthy environment for all members of the Boston University community.
It’s been made clear, through recent events as well as in the undercurrent of a culture that excuses attackers and makes many students feel unsafe both on and off campus, that this center is both a necessary and obvious step for Boston University to create. Outside an understaffed Behavioral Medicine department, we lack safe spaces for survivors of assault to seek help, counseling, referrals, and guidance. And, clearly, our prevention measures are not enough. We all want Boston University to be the safest learning and living environment for our students that it can be, and I believe that this center is a large part of achieving that goal.
As a member of this community who is concerned with the emotional and physical welfare of our students, support the creation of a rape crisis center on campus. And with the sending of this letter, I encourage the administration to support our students by providing this center with the resources to make Boston University a safer and more progressive atmosphere. Join the Center for Gender, Sexuality, and Activism at Boston University and support the establishment of a rape crisis center at Boston University.