February 01, 2017

Temple announces 24-hour campus partnership with Philly rape crisis center

Women's Health Sexual Assault
Stock_Carroll -  Temple University Campus Liacouras Walk Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

Students walk along Temple University's Liacouras Walk.

Temple University and the Philadelphia-based Women Organized Against Rape have launched a new on-site partnership to provide 24-hour support services for victims and survivors of sexual violence at the school's North Philadelphia campus.

The Center City nonprofit, Philadelphia's only rape crisis center, provides specialized treatment services, prevention education programs and advocacy for the rights of sexual assault survivors. An existing relationship with Temple will now be strengthened as a result of a student government push and the findings of the university's Presidential Committee on Campus Sexual Misconduct.

All communication with the anonymous campus location will remain confidential in order to protect those who seek assistance. Victims can call WOAR's 24-hour hotline at 215-985-3333 to receive counseling and support from a trained volunteer. Those who wish to have an in-person meeting can coordinate a time and location on campus with a WOAR representative.

“WOAR has long supplemented Temple’s sexual misconduct resources, but now members of the university community will benefit from their on-site presence after regular business hours,” said Andrea Seiss, Temple’s Title IX coordinator. “This safe, confidential reporting option provides 24/7 support and response by one of the nation’s most respected rape crisis centers.”

While separate from Temple, students who go through WOAR will also have full access to the university's own resources, from Campus Safety Services and Tuttleman Counseling Services to Student Health Services and the Wellness Resource Center. Personal information of those who request help through WOAR will not be released to the university.

“WOAR is excited about enhancing its partnership with Temple and becoming a presence on the campus and in North Philadelphia,” said WOAR Executive Director Monique Howard. “This new direction in our relationship demonstrates Temple’s commitment to ensuring that its students are protected from sexual harassment and sexual violence and that services will be available 24 hours a day.”

The announcement comes after Temple received a $26,000 grant from Pennsylvania's It's On Us campaign, which seeks to end campus sexual assault by providing resources and reframing the conversation about rape in educational communities statewide.