UM Students, 

As the University of Manitoba Students’ Union (UMSU) Vice-President Advocacy, I am writing to you today to mark Sexual Violence Awareness Month and to express our solidarity with all survivors of sexual violence. 

Sexual violence remains a pervasive issue in Canadian society, especially on university campuses. According to the 2019 National College Health Assessment, 63% of female students and 25% of male students reported experiencing some form of sexual violence since starting their university education. It is important to note that Indigenous, Black, Racialized, 2SLGBTQIA* people & women face disproportionate rates of sexual violence. The Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity reports that rates of attempted SV on campus for 2SLGBTQIA* students is 2.5 times higher than that of cisgender-heterosexual students. 

These statistics are deeply concerning and highlight the need for immediate and sustained action to prevent and address sexual violence on campuses. 

UMSU is committed to raising awareness about sexual violence and providing support for survivors. We want to assure all survivors that they are not alone and that we stand with them in their healing journey, whatever that may look like. We are committed to ensuring that the support available to survivors is trauma-informed and takes a survivor centric approach. 

We recognize that sexual violence is a traumatic experience that can have long-lasting effects on survivors’ mental and physical health. It takes a great deal of courage for survivors to come forward and share their experiences, and we want to ensure that every survivor is heard and supported. We also want to recognize the important need to respect the autonomy of all survivors; it is the survivor’s choice whether or not to come forward and speak on one’s experiences. 

We are also committed to creating a campus culture that promotes respect, consent, and healthy relationships. This includes providing education and training on topics such as consent, healthy communication, and bystander intervention. 

As we mark Sexual Violence Awareness Month, we want to remind everyone that preventing and addressing sexual violence is everyone’s responsibility. We encourage all members of the campus community to speak out against sexual violence and to work together to end rape culture – whether it be through our actions, language, jokes or policy of the systems we are a part of. We implore all members of the UM campus community to promote a culture of consent and to support survivors. 

In closing, we want to reiterate our message to survivors: you are not alone, and we are here to support you. If you or someone you know has experienced sexual violence, we encourage you to reach out to the resources available on campus, including the University of Manitoba Sexual Violence Resource Centre, the Student Counselling Centre, and the Office of Human Rights and Conflict Management. 


Victoria Romero,
UMSU Vice-President Advocacy 

Klinic Sexual Assault Crisis Line:

Sexual Violence Resource Centre:

Student Counselling Centre:

Office of Human Rights and Conflict Management: