By Kimberly Miller
Arizona Daily Wildcat
UA fraternity members will soon be given a chance to vent their frustrations and ask questions concerning sexual assault on campus.
After recent events concerning sexual assaults and the indictments made against two fraternity members, the Interfraternity Council and the Student Health Center have combined forces to educate fraternities about rape awareness.
Toward the end of February, the Campus Acquaintance Rape Educators will be bringing its interactive style of education to all University of Arizona fraternities.
Sarah Baird, the advisor for CARE and health education administrator, said she is excited to work with the IFC and is encouraged by its interest in CARE.
"I think the fraternities are being very pro-active in their approach to what's been going on," Baird said. "Sexual assault is a very hot topic right now and it's great that they care and are taking the initiative."
The CARE program is run by students who take a two-credit, one-semester course in rape awareness and education. The students perform rape awareness skits and are trained to answer questions. Baird said skits include scenarios like, "What does it mean when someone wants to go to your room?"
"We like to keep it open so that everyone's questions and frustrations can come out," Baird said. "We're not there just to talk, we're there to listen, and we're open to very controversial opinions."
Judson Grubbs, Interfraternity Council public relations officer, said CARE offers an important service for the campus community.
"I thought that it would be a real good thing to do right now because sexual assault has been such a big issue on campus," Grubbs said. "I think from a legal standpoint a lot of people don't understand what actually constitutes a rape."
Baird said many men she talks to are concerned that they are going to be falsely accused of rape, especially if they are in a frater- mid
"Everyone in fraternities are categorized as men who really don't care," Baird said. "But most guys are disgusted with the fact that rape even happens."
CARE has also done programs with sororities on campus. Baird said she believes it is important to discuss with women their responsibility to keep themselves out of dangerous situations such as heavy drinking. But she stressed that just because someone has been drinking, it does not mean she deserves to be assaulted.
Baird said sexual assaults and alcohol are often linked, and it is not just a "Greek" problem. "Sex assault is not something specific to the Greek community," Baird said. "Research shows that it relates more to a prevalence of alcohol."
The IFC hopes CARE's program will make an impression on fraternity members to be more careful in the future.
"The best thing that can come out of this is that more mature decisions are made when fraternity members are with someone," Grubbs said.
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