Sexual Assault at University of North Florida
Action News Jax recently did a story on the spike of reported sexual assault at University of North Florida (UNF). There were 2 reported rapes in 2015. That number has quadrupled to 9 in 2017. The rise in the number of reported cases can be caused by several factors, including, the rise in social media and online dating, in addition to the growing awareness of sexual assault becoming more common, resulting in more people reporting assaults.
One rape is one too many. Unfortunately, we don't live in a perfect world. Fortunately, there are great people out there to help if you or someone you loved has been a victim of sexual assault.
The UNF campus has the Women's Center within the Division of Student Affairs. If you have been raped call the Crisis Hotline at (904) 620-1010. Their team is made up of dedicated individuals who will provide the help you need and be there to answer your questions. The below information is taken from a brochure I was provided when I visited one of the leading victim advocates on campus.
What to Do If You Have Been Raped
- Get to safe place and contact someone you trust for emotional support.
- Call the police.
- Call the UNF Crisis Helpline. You will be connected to a Victim Advocate. They can aid you in getting any and all medical assistance you might need or help you get to a rape crisis center. You can decide later whether or not you would like to file a report.
- Try to preserve physical evidence. Do not shower, wash your hands, change your clothes, brush your teeth, drink anything douche, urinate, etc. All of these things will destroy evidence (things that your attacker may have left behind, such as fibers, hairs, saliva or semen).
- Keep all clothes in a clean paper bag to preserve evidence.
- Sometimes after victimization, it helps to talk to a mental health professional. See about setting up an appointment with a counselor.
- Sometimes it can be frightening to work through a victimization alone. Contact a victim advocate to help you navigate and explore your legal options.
Helpful Tips for UNF Students to Stay Safe
- If you ever feel unsafe, remember the blue lights around campus are always available. Just press the button and you will be connected with someone who can assist you.
- UPD is available to escort you across campus or to class if you ever need them.
- If you go out, do not leave your drink unattended. If you do, toss it and get a new one. If someone buys you a drink, make sure to watch it as it is being made.
- Take precautions with online dating. You want to think the best of people but it is impossible to another's intentions.
- Download the Safe Ospreys app for more campus safety resources.
If You Have Questions Regarding Your Rights as a Survivor of Rape or Violent Crime
Please contact Clifton Law Office, you can reach me at my contact page online or call me directly at 904-209-4883.