By: Charlene Cristobal
September 3, 2014
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- "Rape culture's a thing," said FSU student Kalia Bickers. "You can pretend that it's not, you can put on your blinders, but it's still happening. It's still an issue..."
Kalia Bickers was just one of the dozens of students that gathered at Market Wednesday for the launch of the "Know More" campaign. Their motto, "Ask. Respect. Don't Expect." Interim President Garnett Stokes launched the campaign to raise awareness about sexual violence and sexual assault. The goal is to bring education to FSU's campus about the issue that's been the topic of universities across the country, especially Florida State.
"We have had some cutting edge programs in place but not everything was in one place. And we're learning a lot more about sexual violence and sexual assault," said Interim President Garnett Stokes. "What it is and ways to prevent it. What it's impact is when it's happened and how to try to manage that impact. So, recognizing that there's a lot of new information and we need to look at that and make sure that we stay ahead in terms of keeping this campus a place that people want their children to come to."
With Stokes at the helm since March, sexual violence prevention has been one of the University's top goals, and FSU students support it.
"I just think that it's something that needs to be ended," said Bickers. "Maybe that won't happen in my lifetime but I can do something so that when my daughter is growing up, I don't have to tell her, 'Oh, change because that skirt's a little too short.' I can tell her, 'You look cute in that skirt!"
In addition to the "Know More" campaign, FSU is also the process of hiring a Title IX Director -- who will be in charge, solely, of handling sexual discrimination and sexual violence complaints at the University.