Wayne State University has been awarded a campus sexual assault prevention grant to fund a program that will work with Midtown and downtown Detroit bars and restaurants to teach, promote, raise awareness and empower bystander intervention by adhering to the motto, "See something, say something."
Wayne State’s grant project — Look Out and Raise Awareness in the D (LORAD) — is made possible by Michigan’s Campus Sexual Assault Grant Program. In total, $1 million in grant funding was awarded to 22 Michigan colleges and universities. The purpose of the grant is to fund the development of new and innovative programs to reduce and/or eliminate sexual assault on college campuses, with the goal of improving the safety and security of all students.
“The resurgence of Detroit, the growth of Midtown, the increase in students living on campus, and the increase in the number of students and other citizens who come to Detroit make this the perfect time to increase bystander intervention in the area of social establishments,” said Dean of Students David Strauss, whose office will lead the program. “We have never branched our sexual violence prevention education programming beyond the ‘walls’ of Wayne State University. Literature tells us that a bar bystander-intervention educational program is needed and has been successful at other institutions.”
The following Wayne State partners assisted in the grant submission and will participate in the project — the Wayne State Police Department, Office of Economic Development, TechTown, Midtown Detroit Inc., Center for Urban Studies, Office of Government and Community Affairs, Office of Housing and Residential Life, and the Title IX Office.
The grant program — administered for the fourth consecutive year by the Michigan State Police — aims to change the overall culture of sexual assault among the college-age population. This year marks the highest investment in the program to date, with more than $2.5 million in grant funding available since it was launched in 2015 by Michigan first lady Sue Snyder.
“I’m proud that Michigan continues to be a leader in campus sexual assault awareness and prevention,” Snyder said. “These grants enable our colleges and universities to develop innovative, evidence-based campaigns and strategies to help make our campuses safer — for students and survivors.”
The grant application review committee included representatives from the Michigan State Police, the Michigan Domestic and Sexual Violence Prevention and Treatment Board, and the Executive Office of the Governor. Grant recipients have until Nov. 30, 2019, to spend their awards.