At the 2016 Oscars, Vice President Joe Biden gave a speech before Lady Gaga’s powerful performance of her song “Til It Happens To You.” Biden urged everyone to take the pledge to stop sexual assault, which can be found on www.ItsOnUs.org. At McDaniel, both on and off campus, there are countless means of support for rape and sexual assault victims.
On-campus resources include the Wellness Center and the Department of Campus Safety. Both are located behind Eaton Hall in Winslow. The Wellness Center is open from 8:30AM to 4:30PM and there are numerous counselors in the Wellness Center that are available to provide individual therapy. A group therapy session titled Surviving Sexual Assault may also be offered if enough students show interest.
Campus Safety is open 24/7 and there are always officers on call if McDaniel students should face any emergencies. Officers can also provide transportation to the emergency room or call an ambulance if needed.
Sergeant Mike Gromley is a trained investigator who works for McDaniel’s Department of Campus Safety. He is one of the lead investigators if a rape or sexual assault is reported on campus. Gromley stated that one objective in the investigation process it to “make the complainant feel comfortable and let them know it’s not their fault.”
It’s difficult for victims of rape and sexual assault to come forward and share their stories, so it’s important that they feel safe and know that they’re not being blamed. If the student does not want an investigation to open, Campus Safety will respect his or her request as long as there is no fear of a repeat offender on campus. Campus Safety will also be required to open their own investigation if the offense is reported to the Westminster Police.
There are also multiple off-campus resources for McDaniel students who have been raped or sexually assaulted. Rape Crisis Intervention Service of Carroll County (RCIS) has a 24-hour hotline and a walk-in office, Monday through Thursday 9AM to 5PM and Friday 9AM to 4PM. They are located on North Center Street, which isn’t too far from McDaniel’s campus. Every year, RCIS organizes a “primary prevention” event called “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” to raise awareness in the community.
RCIS counselors are also available to speak to those in need of guidance at McDaniel’s annual performance of The Vagina Monologues. More information on RCIS can be found on their website at www.rapecrisiscc.org. Other helpful online resources include www.rainn.org, www.notalone.gov, www.aftersilence.org, and www.safehorizon.org.
There are endless resources for rape and sexual assault victims in our community and there is no one should suffer alone. Reaching out to those available to help you is encouraged and receiving help is the first step to healing and moving forward. Using the resources offered online and in our community is a beneficial way to begin your journey.
Wellness Center: (410) 857-2243
Campus Safety: (410) 857-2202
Rape Crisis Intervention Services (RCIS)
224 N. Center St. #102, Westminster, MD 21157
Walk-in office: (410) 857-0900
24-hour hotline: (410) 857-7322