Editorial: See something, say something

Sexual harassment happens too often at public institutions and anyone dealing with sexual harassment on or off campus needs to know one thing: It is not your fault.

Please find the courage to come forward with any information if you have witnessed or fallen victim to any type of sexual harassment.

On Jan. 27, Citrus College District employee Vincent Patino, 34, was arrested on suspicion of invasion of privacy and accepted a guilty charge at a preliminary trial on  Feb. 22.

Patino faced charges of 15 counts of disorderly conduct and four counts of invasion of privacy.

He had been working at the Owl Bookstore for about 10 years.

In an article in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Detective Josh Price said, “A few of the employees and students we talked to said it had been going on for several years but were afraid to come forward about it.”

Patino had been working at a public community college freely sexually harassing women for what authorities believe was more than three years.

If the person who came forward with the information did not, Patino could still be sneaking pictures and videos of female students.

According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.

A survey conducted by the Association of American Universities in September 2015, states that more than 27 percent of female college students have experienced some form of unwanted sexual contact since starting college.

This means more than one out of four women deal with sexual harassment and students are too afraid to come forward.

Students can find Citrus College’s sexual harassment policy at http://www.citruscollege.edu/admin/statements/Pages/SexualHarassment.aspx.

In brief, the policy states what will happen to the student or faculty member if charged on sexual harassment.

It also broadly states the steps one should take for direct action toward sexual harassment, including “say no” and “tell someone.”

What the policy does not make clear is that sexual harassment can happen to anyone at Citrus—whether it is student to student, faculty to faculty, faculty to student and even student to faculty.

The Associated Students of Citrus College executive board are sponsoring the third Sex 101 week starting March 4 to emphasize witness intervention and inform victims where and how they can find help.

If something does not seem right, do not stay quiet.

Talk to the nearest professor or report the incident to Human Resources at 626-914-8550


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