SCOPE Synopsis, October 2012 #9

The Role of Sexual Assault and Relationship Violence Prevention Programs (Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education)

The Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS) developed standards and guidelines for Sexual Assault and Relationship Violence Prevention Programs, including a contextual statement. It is a step forward for institutionalizing sexual violence prevention programs to develop and uphold such guidelines. The following parts are detailed: mission; program; organization and leadership; human resources; ethics; law, policy and governance; diversity, equity and access; institutional and external relations; financial resources; technology; facilities and equipment; assessment and evaluation.

Highlights include: regular review of the mission; collaboration across the institution; intentional program design guided by theory; support regardless of survivor sex or gender; professional development support; evidence-based decision making; knowledge of legal compliance; sensitivity to multicultural and social justice concerns; assessment planning. SCOPE has advocated for many of these elements since its inception and fully supports their integration into prevention program standards

People Power: Mobilizing Communities for Policy Change (Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America, National Community Anti-Drug Coalition Institute)

The effectiveness of environmental strategies is well-suited to community mobilizing. Short term in nature, with specific issues or concerns, driven by a subject expert and encouraging buy-in, community mobilizing can be thought of as an “outside-in” process. Foundations of community mobilizing include SAMSHA’s Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF) and CADCA’s Seven Strategies to Affect Community Change. Case studies and figures are also featured throughout this resource.

Benefits of community mobilizing include: building the volunteer base, enhancing member participation, building leadership, providing a community voice on issues, increasing civic engagement, providing ground-level information about the community and building coalition power. Policy campaign is an efficient tool for community change. Steps of community mobilizing are: listening and relationship building, the challenge, action, evaluation and reflection. Cultural competency and sustainability should always be considered, as should legal considerations.

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