*Note* This scheduling program was not designed by folks who do a lot with APA Style and unfortunately it defaults to listing authors in alphabetical order. We cannot fix this for this online schedule, but the author orders are posted in the order submitted in the printed program available via pdf here.
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Friday, March 6 • 1:05pm - 2:05pm
Reporting sexual violence on campus: Restorative Justice as friend or foe?

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Restorative Justice (RJ) principles lend themselves to their application in disciplinary proceedings on college campuses, particularly since both align well in the aim of fostering human, and in this case student, development. The ideal RJ processes are victim-empowering, dialogue-centered procedures, which focus on accountability and the reinforcement of values in their respective communities (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, 2006). As more colleges implement RJ procedures, there is a scarcity of research of potential consequences for reporting serious misconduct, in particular sexual violence. Almost one in five college women will become the victim of sexual violence (Kilpatrick et al., 2007). Renewed focus in the issue by the White House has put the spotlight on colleges to increasingly prevent, investigate and deal with sexual violence on their campuses. In light of the fact that these cases are notoriously underreported at a rate of only around 5% (to both campus authorities as well as police), women apparently still perceive substantially more negative consequences than benefits to reporting (Fisher et al., 2003). The reasons for not reporting are most often cited as not wanting others to know about what happened/confidentiality and believing that the incident was not serious enough (Sable et al., 2006). It is unclear whether these concerns are affected by models of student conduct policies being traditional versus RJ. As promising as RJ principles may seem for fostering student development, effects on victims and communities need to be of primary concern. Without a thorough investigation of the potential effects, we run the risk of minimizing the incidents and deterring further from reporting instead of empowering the victim and preventing future sexual misconduct. This poster highlights the potential benefits as well as dangers of applying RJ processes to sexual violence cases on college campuses and calls for more focused research.


Heike Mitchell

University of Akron

Ingrid Weigold

University of Akron

Friday March 6, 2015 1:05pm - 2:05pm PST