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UW students, advocates raise awareness about sexual violence ahead of the first week of school

Fifty percent of campus sexual assaults are reported between the first week of school and Thanksgiving break; a period of time referred to as the "Red Zone."

SEATTLE — As students are moving in on campus at the University of Washington ahead of fall quarter, some student leaders like junior Taytem Raynor are partnering with Leda Health to raise awareness about a worrisome trend: one in four college women will be a victim of sexual violence. 

Raynor is the president of Kappa Delta sorority. 

"Kappa Delta currently has 119 members and I can say that all of us at least know someone or are personally affected by this problem," Raynor said.

Kappa Delta sorority is teaming up with Leda Health to raise awareness and share resources at a time when women on college campuses are most at risk, referred to as the "Red Zone." 

"The Red Zone is a scary time that starts in the first week of the college semester and goes until Thanksgiving break," Leda Health CEO and Co-founder Madison Campbell said. "That's when more than 50% of sexual violence incidents are reported on campuses."

"It's super important right now to educate everyone on campus and in our chapter and make sure that they know where to access these resources and that we have them available," Raynor said. 

Leda Health offers resources to sexual assault survivors like early evidence kits for DNA collection, a 24/7 care team, emergency contraceptives, STI testing and educational workshops. 

As students return to campus and start the fall quarter next week, Campbell and Leda Health are looking to expand their reach to more sorority and fraternity leaders. 

“One of the concerning numbers is that 50% of these assaults happen at fraternities so it’s really up to sorority and fraternity leaders to address this to protect their communities,” said Campbell.

Leda Health encourages parents and students to educate themselves on consent and the new resources that are available to survivors of sexual assault. The organization cited statistics that nearly 80% of female survivors don’t receive medical care and 94% report PTSD after they have been assaulted. The organization also says 100% of survivors deserve care and healing after trauma and student leaders are on a mission to make that a reality.

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