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University of Iowa News Release

 

Sept. 26, 2007

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UI renews sexual harassment awareness campaign

The University of Iowa is re-launching a public awareness campaign about sexual harassment and violence as a proactive measure to educate students and the campus community about the issue.

University officials are renewing the campaign after the recent increase in assaults on women in the Iowa City area over the past year. Once again, hundreds of posters with the theme "Sexual harassment can happen anywhere. Get the picture?" will be put up in offices, residence halls, classrooms, and hundreds of other places around campus.

[RELATED: UI Police NITE RIDE program offers women free, safe rides home, http://news-releases.uiowa.edu/2007/september/092607nite-ride.html]

The focus of the campaign is a Web site -- http://www.sexualharassment.uiowa.edu -- that makes faculty, staff and students aware of policies prohibiting sexual harassment/violence. The site also lists resources for dealing with those issues.

To build on the momentum of last year's campaign, UI President Sally Mason will encourage deans, directors and departmental executive officers to place posters in prominent places in their colleges and departments in coming days. Additionally, vinyl window stickers will be placed in Cambuses, and postcards will be mailed to all students living in residence halls. Advertisements will also be placed in the Daily Iowan starting Wednesday, Sept. 26 and on Facebook, the popular social networking Web site.

The posters and other visual elements of the campaign feature photographs of places where sexual harassment may occur, added with the "Sexual harassment can happen anywhere" theme and Web address for more information.

The concept was developed in 2006 by the Iowa Memorial Union's Graphic Design Unit to support the university's comprehensive response to recommendations in a report by the Campus Climate Committee and a subsequent campus survey on sexual harassment conducted by the Council on the Status of Women.

Bret Gothe, IMU marketing and creativity coordinator, said the eye-catching campaign was developed by a team that included Sara Lenger, IMU design supervisor, and student designers.

"Our goal was to try to raise awareness about sexual harassment on campus in a way that was visually compelling," Gothe said. "We wanted to communicate our message in a way that was respectful about the topic but also addressed the concerns raised by the climate reports and surveys."

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Nancy Abram, IMU Marketing and Design, 319-335-3414, nancy-abram@uiowa.edu; George McCrory, University News Services, 319-384-0012, george-mccrory@uiowa.edu