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UConn: Sexual Violence Survey Shows Students Feel Safe

STORRS, Conn. — A survey on sexual violence shows students feel safe on University of Connecticut campuses, school officials said Monday.

The university released the results of the anonymous survey of 6,000 random students, which was administered in November 2015 by the Higher Education Data Sharing Consortium. About 1,500 students from Storrs and regional campuses responded.

The school said 5.5 percent of those responding said they have been the victim of a sexual assault, and another 2.6 percent said they suspected they had been assaulted. Of those students who reported experiencing sexual assault, 26.5 percent said they were unable to provide consent because of incapacitation.

Eighty-two percent of respondents agreed that they feel safe on campus. Six percent of students said they disagree or strongly disagree with that idea, and 12 percent neither agreed nor disagreed.

Fifty-five percent of respondents said they know how to report an incident of sexual assault or know the confidential resources available to sexual assault victims. Only 35 percent answered that they knew the university procedures for investigating a sexual assault.

“Based on these results, I have asked our Division of Student Affairs, Title IX Coordinator, Graduate School and other key campus partners to focus concentrated efforts on enhanced prevention programming, and to continue to raise awareness of the support and resources available to anyone in the UConn community impacted by sexual violence,” Herbst said in an email to the university community.

The consortium conducted similar surveys at other schools across the nation, but comparative data is not expected to be available for several months, school officials said.

Yale University in December released a survey from the Association of American Universities that found an estimated 25.2 percent of undergraduates there had experienced at least one incident that “does not meet Yale’s standard for consent,” and 18.1 percent had experienced an incident that involved “force or incapacitation.”

But UConn officials cautioned that comparing data from two different survey instruments is not reliable, in part because the two surveys did not ask identical questions.

Yale’s survey was sent to all students. UConn’s survey used a selection method designed to minimize the likelihood that sexual assault victims would be more likely to respond to the survey than others on campus, school officials said.

The UConn survey’s error margin is 2.5 to 3 percentage points, the school said.

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