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What You Can Do
- Sexual contact requires mutual consent. An incapacitated person (for example, a person who is intoxicated by drugs or alcohol) is incapable of giving consent.
- No one deserves to be sexually assaulted, stalked or victimized in any way.
- Don’t engage in any behavior that may be considered dating/domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking or any other form of violence.
- Never use force, coercion, threats, alcohol or other drugs to engage in sexual activity.
- Take responsibility for your actions.
- Avoid alcohol and other drugs.
- Remember “no” means “No!” and “stop” means “Stop!”
- Report incidents of violence (including coercion) to law enforcement and campus authorities.
- Discuss dating/domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking with friends—speak out against violence and clear up misconceptions.
- Don’t mistake submission or silence for consent.
- Be aware. Does your partner: Threaten to hurt you or your children? Say it’s your fault if he or she hits you and then promises it won’t happen again (but it does)? Put you down in public? Force you to have sex when you don’t want to? Follow you? Send you unwanted messages and gifts?
- Be assertive. Speak up.
- Stay sober and watch out for dates and/or anyone who tries to get you drunk or high.
- Clearly communicate limits to partners, friends, and acquaintances.
- Never leave a party with someone you don’t know well and trust.
- Trust your feelings; if it feels wrong, it probably is.
- Learn all you can and talk with your friends. Help them stay safe.
- Report incidents of violence to law enforcement and campus authorities.
- Go to a safe place as soon as possible.
- Preserve evidence.
- Report the incident to University Police or local law enforcement.
- Report the incident to your campus Title IX Coordinator.
- Call a domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking hotline.
- Call a friend or family member for help.
- Know that you are not at fault. You did not cause the abuse to occur and you are not responsible for someone else’s violent behavior.
There usually is a pattern or a repeated cycle of Dating Violence, starting with the first instance of abuse.
General Pattern of Behavior:
• Tension Building: Relationship begins to get strained or tense between partners.
• Explosion: Outburst that includes verbal, emotional, or physical abuse.
• Honeymoon: Apologies where the abuser tries to re-connect with his/her partner by shifting the blame onto someone or something else.
Any actions used for the intent of gaining power and control over a person:
- Physical Abuse: any use of physical force with the intent to cause injury (i.e. grabbing in a way to inflict pain, hitting, shoving, strangling, kicking)
- Emotional Abuse: non-physical behaviors such as threats, insults, constant monitoring, humiliation, intimidation, isolation, silent treatment, or stalking
- Sexual Abuse: any action that impacts the partner’s ability to control his/her sexual activity or the circumstance in which sexual activity occurs, including rape, coercion or restricting access to birth control
Ask yourself if your partner engages in one or any of the following activities:
- Checks my cell phone or email without my permission.
- Monitors where I’m going, who I’m going with, what I’m doing.
- Repeatedly says or does things to make me feel inadequate or inferior to him/her.
- Extreme jealously or insecurity.
- Isolates me from my friends and family.
- Explosive temper.
- Mood swings.
- Assumes control over my access to financial resources.
- Tells me what to do.
- Physically hurts me in any way.
Stalking means a repeated course of conduct directed at a specific person (when based on gender or sex) that places that person in reasonable fear for his/her or others’ safety, or to suffer substantial emotional distress.
Stalking is a pattern of behavior that makes you feel afraid, nervous, harassed or in danger. It is when someone repeatedly contacts you, follows you, sends you things, talks to you when you don't want them to or threatens you. Stalking behaviors can include:
- Damaging your property.
- Knowing your schedule.
- Showing up at places you go.
- Sending mail, e-mail, texts and pictures.
- Creating a website about you.
- Sending gifts.
- Stealing things that belong to you.
- Calling you repeatedly.
- Any other actions that the stalker takes to contact, harass, track or frighten you.
You can be stalked by someone you know casually, a current boyfriend or girlfriend, someone you dated in the past or a stranger. Getting notes and gifts at your home, on your car or other places might seem sweet and harmless to other people. But if you don't want the gifts, phone calls, messages, letters or e-mails, it doesn't feel sweet or harmless. It can be scary and frustrating.
Sometimes people stalk their boyfriends or girlfriends while they're dating. They check up on them, text or call them all the time, expect instant responses, follow them, use GPS to secretly monitor them and generally keep track of them, even when they haven't made plans to be together. These stalking behaviors can be part of an abusive relationship. If this is happening to
you or someone you know, you should talk to a trusted person.
Stalking is a crime and can be dangerous. California Penal Code section 646.9, in part, states, “Any person who willfully, maliciously and repeatedly follows or willfully and maliciously
harasses another person and who makes a credible threat with the intent to place that person in
reasonable fear for his or her safety, or the safety of his or her immediate family is guilty of the
crime of stalking…..”
Think about ways you can be safer. This means thinking about what to do, where to go for help and who to call ahead of time:
- Where can you go for help?
- Who can you call?
- Who will help you?
- How will you escape a violent situation?
- In an emergency, call 911 or University Police or the local police department.
- Let friends or family members know when you are afraid or need help.
- Be aware of your surroundings. Knowing where you are and who is around you may help you find a way to get out of a bad situation.
- Avoid isolated areas.
- Avoid putting headphones in both ears so you can be more aware of your surroundings.
- Trust your instincts. If a situation or location feels unsafe or uncomfortable, remove yourself.
- Vary your routine, your driving routes and where you park your car.
- When you go out, tell someone where you are going and when you'll be back.
- Memorize the phone numbers of people to contact or places to go in an emergency.
- Don’t load yourself down with packages or bags restricting your movement.
- Keep your cell phone handy; check to see that you have reception and that your cell phone is charged.
- Have money for a cab or other transportation.
- Save notes, letters or other items that the stalker sends to you. Keep a record of all contact that the stalker has with you; these items will be very useful in an investigation.
If you know someone who is being stalked, you can:
- Encourage your friend to seek help.
- Be a good listener.
- Offer your support.
- Ask how you can help.
- Educate yourself about stalking.
- Avoid any confrontations with the stalker; this could be dangerous for you and your friend.