Sexual respect is a commitment to acting with integrity and respect for others, and is a responsibility that individually and collectively matters despite our differences. How we treat one another is vitally important.

On our campus, the Denison Coalition for Sexual Respect is charged to share, create and promote opportunities to educate the community about sexual misconduct, sexual violence and other forms of gender and relationship violence, as well as to advocate for those affected.

Made up of faculty, staff and students who represent principal majors, offices and various organizations on campus, DCSR aims to prevent violence and promote a culture of sexual respect within and outside of our community. This organization goes beyond what a single individual could do and instead represents a collaborative effort in the Denison community.

The DCSR is a fairly new organization which grew out of the former initiative known as the Community Sexual Misconduct and Assault Response Team (CSMART). This year, they faced a complete reconstruction of the organization, as an executive board was created and new members were elected into those positions. Currently, the exec. board has five administrators. Hannah Getto ‘20 and Lauren Thompson ‘18 serve as co-presidents, Jordan Gelber ‘20 is vice president, Alena Lassen ‘18 is secretary and Jamie Carroll ‘18 is head of public relations.

When asked about her reasons for joining, president Hannah Getto said, “I was sexually assaulted before coming to college by my boyfriend and just want to create a world where that doesn’t happen to anyone. A world where sexual respect is so ingrained as who we are as a nation and a community that we don’t have occurrences of people being assaulted. It’s so common as a woman that almost every female I know has been sexually assaulted or harassed in some capacity. That’s not the future I want my children and younger siblings growing up in. I want to foster a community that is grounded in respect for people.”

Hannah is a religion and women’s and gender studies double major with a concentration in queer studies from Ypsilanti, Michigan.

Other co-president Lauren Thompson, a senior biochemistry major and mathematics minor from Cincinnati, Ohio said, “DCSR is so important for this campus as it’s a space for voices from all across Denison to come together and talk about what sexual respect means in our campus culture and then mobilize on ideas of how we can increase that. In the past two years, I have watched DCSR grow and change. We have developed an executive board, found representation from various campus organizations, and collaborated on awesome events like Custard & Consent.”

Custard and Consent was a collaboration with DASH and IFC where students were given free Whit’s to eat while engaging in enlightening discussions about consent. This event created a comfortable environment where students held open, important talks about what consent means.

In terms of future events, at Lamson Lodge on Wednesday, April 4 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., DCSR will be partnering up with DCGA, IFC and SHARE to host a sex and alcohol trivia night.

Another event will occur on Thursday, April 19 from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., where DCSR is one of many organizations that will participate in Fresh Check Day. This day promotes mental health awareness and coping strategies through interactive activities outside of Slayter.

The DCSR typically meets every other Monday at 4:30 p.m. in Higley Auditorium. They hold laid back, goal oriented meetings where members bring organizations together to discuss policy change, specifically the ways that Denison can become a more connected campus through collaborative events. Currently, members from about 12 different organizations act as liaisons between the coalition and their organization, group or team. Typically, members spitball goals for the semester and work diligently with others to tackle a wide range of ideas and plan unique events.

They encourage student advocates for sexual respect to attend their last two meetings of the year, which will be held on April 9 and 23 at 4:30 p.m. in Higley Auditorium.

Respect for one another is important as Denison fosters community and positive relationships. When we respect others, we are valuing their importance. If you treat others with kindness, they will be kind back.