Greeks Against Sexual Assault

Greeks Against Sexual Assault works towards increasing awareness, educating, and eliminating sexual assault and dating violence
from the Greek community through peer education and activism amongst sororities and fraternities nationwide.

About Greeks Against Sexual Assault

The University of California, Davis has operated the Campus Violence Prevention Program (CVPP) since 1979.

In an effort to further target the Greek community, GASA was created through CVPP in the spring of 2007. A class was developed and all Greek chapters were encouraged to have a representative enroll. The first class in the fall of 2007 had 16 representatives who were educated on the facts about sexual assault and the resources available on campus. The final project for the class was for each representative to go back and present their new knowledge to their own chapters.

Due to the enormous success of the pilot program, the class will be offered on a bi-annual basis and we look forward to sharing the program with many campuses in the coming months.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010



Erin Burrows,
Campus Accountability Project Coordinator,
(347) 465-7233,

Susan Celia Swan
Managing Director, Communications,
(917) 865-6603,


Project Celebrates One Year Anniversary on December 1st;

Launches Winter Break Challenge

New York, NY, December 1, 2010—College students are taking action to hold their schools accountable for making their campus communities safer. Students Active for Ending Rape (SAFER) and V-Day are proud to announce the success of the first year of student submissions to our online database of sexual assault policies from schools across the country. In an effort to publish 400 policies by May 2011, SAFER and V-Day are launching the Winter Break Challenge to further build the Campus Accountability Project (CAP) Policies Database as a tool for student-led movements to reform sexual assault policies. Currently, the CAP database houses 130 policies in an online, public and searchable database which details what colleges and universities are doing to prevent, reduce and respond to sexual violence on campus.

CAP publicly recognizes the successes of some schools’ sexual assault policies while also identifying gaps in others. Preliminary results show that an overwhelming majority (75%) of schools in the database provide 24-hour crisis services to survivors as well as security measures like campus blue lights and escort services. Policies are also largely inclusive of a diverse community—92% use gender neutral language and ensure access to resources for all students, regardless of sexual orientation, race or ethnicity. However, while 72% of the schools offer primary prevention programs to address the root causes of sexual violence, only 9% mandate student participation in such programs. Also, a mere 7% of schools in the database include a drug and alcohol amnesty clause for survivors of sexual assault and only 62% allow for anonymous reporting. Because fears of retaliation and feelings of shame and guilt are often barriers to reporting an assault, it is crucial that more schools adopt amnesty clauses and provide confidential and anonymous reporting options for survivors.

Beginning December 1, 2010, V-Day and SAFER are encouraging students to participate in the Campus Accountability Project during their winter break.The Winter Break Challenge asks students to register at and submit their school using CAP’s easy, step-by-step policy review form. We’re also asking students to encourage their friends and fellow activists at other schools to submit to CAP. The database is utilized by student activists looking to make positive change on their campus, and also provides us with a wealth of information on the best and worst practices in sexual assault prevention and response at schools across the country. Only students can submit to CAP, but anyone can access the database by registering for free. You can help kick-start real change on campuses nationwide by sharing this information and posting the Facebook event and Why Policy video on your wall and blog today!


SAFER is a volunteer-run organization that has been training and supporting student activists for a decade. We offer comprehensive programming to support student-led movements for campus sexual assault policy reform. In addition to the CAP policies database, our website houses the Activist Resource Center, an online library of tools for organizers. We also run a national, in-person trainings program to help students kick-start policy reform campaigns and offer ongoing mentoring via the Activist Mentoring Program, (AMP!).

About V-Day

V-Day is a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls that raises funds and awareness through benefit productions of Playwright/Founder Eve Ensler’s award winning play The Vagina Monologues and other artistic works. In 2010, over 5400 V-Day benefit events took place produced by volunteer activists in the U.S. and around the world, educating millions of people about the reality of violence against women and girls. To date, the V-Day movement has raised over $75 million and educated over 300 million people about the issue of violence against women and the efforts to end it, crafted international educational, media and PSA campaigns, reopened shelters, and funded over 12,000 community-based anti-violence programs and safe houses in Democratic Republic Of Congo, Haiti, Kenya, South Dakota, Egypt and Iraq. In 2001, V-Day was named one of Worth Magazine's "100 Best Charities" and in 2006 one of Marie Claire Magazine's Top Ten Charities.

A Letter from a Prosecutor to a Young Woman

***This article was originally published here***

A Letter from a Prosecutor to a Young Woman

Dear Elizabeth:

I don’t see what more you could have done.

As you well know, reporting sexual assault is a remarkably difficult act. It is deeply emotional, terrifying for many reasons, unpredictable and often thankless. You may not have known while you were alive that the great majority of sexual violence is simply never reported to authorities. But you did report it, quickly and comprehensively. I’m in awe of your courage.

I can only imagine how difficult it was for you in particular, Lizzy. You were a 19 year-old college freshman who had struggled with depression; a lovely young woman who had just started studies again after a difficult first year. But you made it to St. Mary’s, an excellent, close-knit school and one situated along with Notre Dame in the heartland of Catholic education. Arriving in this environment from a strong Catholic background must have been an incredible and hard-won joy for you.

But I’m sure it also made it infinitely more difficult to come forward and report what happened on the night of August 31. Being sexually assaulted at a place like Notre Dame and by a member of its football team- the very beating heart of the school for many- is an act that would have silenced most. Few things are more difficult to come to terms with than being attacked in a dorm room by a football player on one of the most venerated sports campuses in the world. The idea of telling anyone must have been horrific, especially as you were just settling into a new school, a new semester, a new season of hope. I’ve spent a career learning how hopes like that can be destroyed in the space of moments, and it never gets easier to hear.

Still, you faced down your fears and took action. You told your friends and wrote down what happened that very night. You went to campus police the next day. Despite the fear of being portrayed as God-knows-what and the fury that might rain down on you for reporting against a football player, you reported anyway. Despite the discomfort of an invasive physical examination, you endured one. Despite the fear and exhaustion that comes with entering counseling in order to fully recover from such an attack, you did that, too. You did everything that could possibly have been asked of you.

That’s why I’m trying to understand why Notre Dame, the world-class, excellent institution where you were attacked, has reacted the way it has. I don’t know why campus police didn’t turn over a case file to the St. Joseph’s County prosecutor’s office until just several days ago- after your case became national news and your hometown paper began demanding answers. Nor do I understand what’s behind the school’s refusal to release police records regarding what they know about what happened to you- even to your parents.

Finally, and most disturbingly, I don’t know why the man you reported against has played an entire season of football. While it’s true that he is and should be considered innocent until proven otherwise, his privilege to play football isn’t in any way related to his legal rights as a citizen. The fact is, you reported swiftly and completely a serious crime to the proper authorities that control his ability to play, and you followed through with evidence collection, counseling and cooperation. Yet still they have chosen to refuse to even acknowledge your complaint, let alone bar him from playing at least until the investigation is completed. This despite your death. Coach Kelly won’t state whether he’s even spoken to the player you identified. He’s quick to remind us that he stresses respect for women in his program, is a father himself, and wants “the right kind of guys” on his team. Well, the player hasn’t been benched in three months; from this we can fairly deduce that Coach Kelly supports him as someone who is “the right kind of guy” and worthy of wearing the uniform. If that’s so, why won’t he give his reasons?

The sad fact is there’s an ocean of ignorance out there regarding what happened to you, Lizzy. Many who are watching the case unfold are repeating over and over again the meaningless mantra that that we must all “Remember Duke Lacrosse.” It’s because many believe, with nothing to back it up, that women regularly accuse men falsely of sexual assault, and especially athletes. They’re happy to extrapolate one example of a false accusation to every possible situation, despite the mountain of evidence suggesting that women just like you endure what you endured day in and day out, usually in numbed silence.

Even worse, some just don’t think that sexual assault is nearly as important as college athletics, and they’ll sacrifice the vindication of a budding, brilliant life like yours in a flurry of nonsense that will trivialize your suffering and ruthlessly twist reality. They’ll call it regret. They’ll call it a misunderstanding. They’ll call it anything but what it is, and they’ll ensconce and defend the man who did it so he can simply do it again. So even the prompt, thorough complaint you made and the investigation you participated in until your death wasn’t enough to bench a football player for a few games until some evidence came to light, one way or another.

But as you know, there are also wonderful people both at Notre Dame and at St. Mary’s. Both are beloved, respected schools for a reason, and I know you felt and still feel that. To the heroic staff from St. Mary’s Belles Against Violence who worked with you and actually found you before you died, I hope you smile on them from where you are and bless their work.

I believe in a loving God, Lizzy. Although I’m a Catholic as you are I don’t believe He punishes those tortured enough to take their own lives, and I’m confident that you’ve reached a plane of existence that will give you not only blessed relief but also infinite understanding. So I guess this letter is more for me than for you; you have the answers now.

Still, I’m sorry. I’m sorry I didn’t know you in this life, and for what it’s worth l would have been honored to work with you to see the case against your attacker proven. I would have had much to go on, given the dedication you showed to pursuing justice and the courage you summoned to do what most of us wouldn’t have dared. Thank you.


© 2010, Roger Canaff. All rights reserved.