VANCOUVER – The University of British Columbia is putting extra safety measures in place following several sexual assaults on campus, but the response itself is stirring controversy just a few weeks after scandal erupted over a frosh-week rape chant.
The university is holding emergency meetings to alert students, handing out whistles and says it will install more lighting and step-up its late-night Safewalk program after three reported assaults.
The institution is also running a series of ads on 100 buses that come to the campus warning female students not to walk alone.
The response from one anonymous student is a series of unofficial posters warning males not to be rapists, saying a woman walking alone at night is not an invitation to assault.
Just last month, the Sauder School of Business, where the first-year commerce students involved in the chant attend class, was defaced with graffiti attacking the “rape culture” at the university.
Louise Cowin, vice-president of students for UBC, says practical safety measures are the priority, but she says a wider discussion is necessary and the university is forming a group to look at the issue and report back with recommendations.