Last week, The Feminist Wire published our Open Letter to ASU President Michael Crow. We hope he takes it seriously, and we hope he will join us in our effort to make ASU a safe campus.
President Michael Crow,
Last week, we learned Executive Vice President and Provost Betty Phillips will be leaving Arizona State University, and you invited comments and ideas from the Sun Devil community to help you choose her replacement. As you may be aware, over 40 colleges and universities are currently under investigation for mishandling sexual assault. ASU has a history of mishandling reports of sexual assault and was the subject of two federal investigations during the course of Phillips’ career.
We (students, alum, staff, and faculty) hope that in making your decision you take into account the responsibility ASU has to provide an educational environment free from sexual harassment and assault. ASU has failed to provide such an environment thus far, and is in desperate need of leadership committed to upholding the federal law and combating cultures of sexual violence in ASU’s Greek Life, at Barrett, Honors College, and elsewhere at ASU.
We hope that this moment can serve as a turning point and opportunity for the University to start prioritizing safety over reputation. After all, what is better for ASU’s reputation than a safe campus, free of rape and harassment?
As survivors of sexual violence at ASU and allies, we offer these suggestions out of love for our school and our fellow Sun Devils. We sincerely hope you will take our suggestions into consideration. We are available should you wish to discuss these ideas with us.
Sun Devils Against Sexual Assault
Originally published to The Feminist Wire on September 10, 2013.