June 6, 2017

FREDERICTON, N.B. – Last Thursday at the Student Union Building, representatives from St. Thomas University (STU), the University of New Brunswick – Fredericton (UNB) and New Brunswick Community College (NBCC), signed a multi-year partnership agreement with the Fredericton Sexual Assault Centre to develop a sexual assault strategy on all three campuses.

The reasoning behind this strategy is the acknowledgement that sexual assault is not contained to a single institution. STUSU and UNBSU acknowledge that because of this and due to the close proximity of the three schools, a strategy to combat sexual assault should not be restricted to one institution either.

“By collaborating with the other schools and the Fredericton Sexual Assault Centre, they each improve the effectiveness of their response to sexual violence within the community,” says Philippe Ferland, President, STUSU. “This also facilities a clear and informed voice on the topic.”

The three-year commitment will cost a total of $240,000 – about $80,000 per year. This investment enhances the partnership with the Fredericton Sexual Assault Centre to create progressive strategies surrounding the multi-faceted problem of sexual assault.

These strategies include: support and advocacy on behalf of complainants, promoting public awareness, and developing training for staff and student leaders. The plan includes four pillars which are the following: prevention, intervention and response, education, and research and evaluation.

“Our student unions will continue to partner with the university to create a campus where sexual violence is not tolerated, where the discussion of sexual assault is de-stigmatized and where students are educated about the resources available for sexual assault survivors,” said Herbert Bempah, President, UNBSU.

The new strategy also maintains Maggie Forsythe's full time position as the Campus Sexual Assault Support Advocate.

“The STUSU pleased to see the three neighboring institutions working together on this strategy to combat sexual assault on campus,” says Brianna Workman, Vice-President Education, STUSU. “This year Maggie was an invaluable resource on our campus and we our extremely happy that this strategy includes funding to maintain her position and presence on-campus.”

The strategy will be reviewed and assessed in two years. The STUSU and UNBSU look forward to working with their institutions on these initiatives and seeing the impact they will have on students on all three campuses. 

Media Contact: Brianna Workman, Vice-President Education, STUSU, su_vped@stu.ca, 506-452-0627.