On February 10, 2015, the CBC released the results of a survey of 84 Canadian universities’ data on sexual assault reporting. With 14 formally registered incidents between 2009 and 2013, Mount Allison University was found to have the second highest rate of reporting in the country.

CHMA interviews with students, staff, and administration at Mount Allison found a near-consensus that cross-institutional comparisons yield little useful information. And headlines like “Mount Allison Leads Province in Reported Sexual Assault” do little to tackle underlying issues or illuminate the path ahead for a campus community seeking change. The study, however, has sparked a dialogue within the institution and the university community about sexual assault. Students and administration say that it may be time to re-evaluate the University’s policy and procedures regarding sexual harassment and assault.

This hour-long audio documentary is our contribution to the conversation. We spoke with Ron Byrne, Vice President of International and Student Affairs for Mount Allison, with Melody Petlock, the Sexual Harassment Advisor employed 15 hours per week by the university to respond to the needs of students related to gender-based violence, and with a number of students.

We tried to ask important questions that seemed missing from the conversation. How does the University as an institution and a community track use of sexual assault services? How does it evaluate itself? How can students be included in the conversation? How much can a single 15 hour per week advisor position do to address both prevention and after-care for survivors of harassment and assault? What kinds of transformation do administrators, students, and staff hope to see, both at a policy level and a cultural level?

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