Cycling is about "Safe exercise" and "Safe low-emission travel" The Health and Fitness objective is UNDERMINED if the means of exercise is UNSAFE! This blog STRONGLY OPPOSES certain reforms VicRoads is currently considering: “cyclists could be allowed to treat red lights as Give Way signs. And the same could also APPLY at pedestrian lights."
Also "PERMITTING cyclists, riding cautiously, to proceed past a stationary tram;" "allowing teenagers to ride on footpaths"(Herald Sun)PDowe
Sunday, May 29, 2016
Community Safety Gender Equality Rape Campus Rape Australian university life's nasty little secret: campus rape The Age May 23, 2016
Australian university life's nasty little secret: campus rape
Emma Hunt's first taste of university life was brutal.
She says she was raped in a wooden cabin at a Monash University orientation week camp in 2014.
Emma Hunt is still dealing with the trauma of an on-campus sexual assault. Photo: Paul Jeffers
"One minute I was dancing. The next minute I woke up and someone was raping me," she said.
The event was spruiked as an opportunity to make new friends, but it left the 20-year-old with permanent scars.
Now Emma has joined a growing chorus of female students calling for improved safety, support and initiatives on campus to prevent "rape culture".
She reported the attack to the university's Safer Community Unit, which employed four former Victorian Police officers. They encouraged her to go to the police, but she was reluctant. She doesn't want to go through the ordeal of a trial.
"The university say they can't help me until police are involved and they are not really willing to provide me with an alternative to feel safe on campus", she said.
A student who found Emma in a bed with a male student said she felt uncomfortable about the situation. She was worried that Emma, who had been drinking, was unable to give consent.
A group of students hauled the man off Emma.
Universities have been accused of worrying more about their reputation than confronting sexual abuse and harassment allegations.
Earlier this week, it was revealed that students' sexual encounters were broadcast over a PA system at one University of Sydney college while residents at a neighbouring college published a journal that "slut shamed" female students.
Emma is still dealing with the trauma of her assault, and receives regular counselling.
She has bumped into her alleged perpetrator at the university's Clayton campus, and is scared it will happen again.
Emma welcomes initiatives such as the university's screening of The Hunting Ground – a documentary about sexual assaults at US colleges – but said students need to be taught about consent.
"Students are just above the legal age when they start ... they are left to do whatever they want," she said. "There needs to be more focus on preventing rape culture."
It is not known how prevalent sexual harassment and assaults are at Australian universities.
But a recent National Union of Students report found that 53 per cent of abuse victims were targeted on campus, at a university event or college. Only 6 per cent of victims reported the incidents to the university and 5 per cent to police.
It is not an issue confined to Monash University - the NUS report includes details of a University of Melbourne student who said they were assaulted on a sports camp and a 22-year-old Deakin student said they were assaulted in their lecturer's car.
Late last year, the Centre Against Sexual Assault received three anonymous reports of an inner-city university student spiking the drinks of his classmates and then raping them at his house.
One student, who did not want to be named, told Fairfax Media she was raped in 2011 by a popular, politically active student at her university.
After hours of trying to fend off the rapist's sexual passes, she left the club and got into a taxi to go home. The rapist jumped in the front, and instructed the driver to go to his parents' address, where he raped her.
"I said I wanted to go to my place, but was too scared and drunk, I didn't know what to do. The rest is history," she said.
It's said that this man has assaulted other women on campus, but the victim doesn't believe he has been reported to police or the university.
"I didn't want speak out in fear I would be attacked, I feared his friends would attack me online. I didn't want to open myself up to that."
NUS women's officer Heidi Le Paglia said universities should encourage students to disclose abuse and clearly spell out the repercussions for sexual predators.
Many vice-chancellors still deny there is a problem, she said.
She said that after reporting abuse, students had to wait for up to six months to see university counsellors because services were stretched.
"When other things occur which are against student codes of conduct such as plagiarising … the university does have responsive reporting processes, which include punishment … there shouldn't be any reason why they can't do this for sexual assault," she said.
Earlier this year, Universities Australia launched a sector-wide campaign to prevent sexual harassment and assaults. It is spending almost $1 million on a national survey, which will be conducted by the Australian Human Rights Commission and provide data on the prevalence of sexual assaults and harassments.
A Monash University spokesman said that since 2014 the university had received four reports of on-campus sexual assault and 20 off-campus assaults.
When victims don't want to report to police, he said the university could take steps to quarantine the victim from the alleged perpetrator and monitor the perpetrator's movements
"Victims of sexual assault or harassment are encouraged and supported to report to the police, but if they choose not to do so that choice is respected. Meanwhile, Monash continues to seek ways to provide them with personal support, and to limit potential for contact with the alleged perpetrator."
If you need to talk to someone about sexual assault or sexual harassment, call 1800RESPECT.