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Aliya Schneider / Columbia Daily Spectator

The group has been rekindled this year under the Resident Hall Leadership Organization by RHLO Director of Advocacy and Policy Andrew Rodriguez CC ’20 and Assistant Director of Advocacy and Policy Morgan Kang CC ’20.

The newly revived Coalition Against Sexual Violence is launching “Let’s Bring Sexy Back”—a sex positivity and consent education campaign that will include events and programming throughout the year aimed at building student awareness around gender-based misconduct.

CASV was originally founded in 2015 to facilitate conversation around sexual violence, but dissipated as founding members graduated and new membership faded.

The group has been rekindled this year under the Resident Hall Leadership Organization by RHLO Director of Advocacy and Policy Andrew Rodriguez CC ’20 and Assistant Director of Advocacy and Policy Morgan Kang CC ’20. Rodriguez and Kang said CASV has a renewed commitment to three main pillars: promoting sex positivity and safe practice, educating students on the nature of sexual assault and gender-based misconduct, and advocating for legislative change across the University.

The campaign will launch on Friday in partnership with Spectator’s Free Food Expo, and will include four major weeks throughout this and next semester—Awareness Week, Health and Wellness Week, Legislation Week, and Sex Positivity Week.

“Let’s Bring Sexy Back” follows the groundbreaking report conducted by the Sexual Health Initiative to Foster Transformation in 2017, which found that one in three women at Columbia experience sexual assault by the end of their senior year.

“We read the SHIFT study and from that we knew it was a problem. … The SHIFT study gave us tangible data,” Kang said.

Kang highlighted the importance of CASV in providing programming that goes beyond the training incoming first-years are required to take during the New Student Orientation Program.

“The mental health training as well as the SVR training during NSOP are really to make people more aware of how to be a gatekeeper as well as how to intervene in dangerous situations,” Kang said. “This is more about promoting fundamental, cultural, and community change—changing the way people think about these issues in regards to the different identities students inhabit. … Also, I think that [the NSOP training] sort of ends there, while we want to continue the conversation throughout the year.”

CASV is partnering with many student groups including the Asian American Alliance and the First-Generation Low-Income Partnership. Rodriguez said that, by working with as many groups as possible, CASV hopes to create future proposals to bring to administrators.

“We feel as though by starting with the students, that will really create conversation, it will create a push that administrators really can't ignore,” he said. “So far, everyone is super enthusiastic to be a part of this. … It really indicates that [students] want to see change. They want to be a part of the conversation.”

Awareness Week will run from October 22 to 26, and include programming on “issues surrounding sexual assault and gender-based misconduct on campus and worldwide.”

Health and Wellness Week, which will run from November 12 to 16, will feature experts from medical and psychological fields to promote physical and mental wellness in relation to sexual health.

CASV will also host Legislation Week next February, aimed at creating and implementing new policies, and Sex Positivity Week next April, which will focus on erasing stigmas surrounding sex.

Morgan Kang was a manager on Spectator’s revenue team in the 2016-17 school year, but is no longer involved with Spectator.

elina.arbo@columbiaspectator.com | @ColumbiaSpec

Coalition Against Sexual Violence CASV Gender-based misconduct
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