New assault data demand policy

Daily Editorial Board

The Association of American Universities released a nationwide survey on Monday that provides one of the most comprehensive sets of data produced on sexual assault on college campuses. The survey includes data from 27 universities nationwide.
 
Survey results show that sexual assault at the University of Minnesota — where about one-quarter of female undergraduates have experienced either sexual assault or sexual misconduct while enrolled — matches trends at other United States universities. 
 
Minnesota Student Association President Joelle Stangler told the Minnesota Daily that the survey results are evidence that the undergraduate student government is right in placing an emphasis on combatting sexual assault at the University. She also said the survey is not the end of the story, noting that there is more work to be done to determine which campus-based programs will help alleviate the problem. 
 
We have previously commended Stangler for her work on sexual assault and prevention at the University, and we would like to do so again. We agree that the survey data are helpful in creating policy and understanding the sexual assault problem, but more remains to be done if sexual assault rates at the University are still in line with those at schools across the country. 
 
A plethora of surveys on sexual assault and other campus health issues exist — including this AAU study, the Boynton Health Service College Student Health Survey and others. Now it’s time to take this information and craft new policy from it.