Hamline News

Start by Believing

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Hamline is the first school in Minnesota to join the Start by Believing campaign, in partnership with Ramsey County. Start by Believing is a public awareness campaign aimed at ending the cycle of silence in cases of sexual assault.

On Tuesday, September 19, 2017 Hamline hosted the Start by Believing Rally in the Anderson Student Center. At the event, President Miller signed the Start by Believing proclamation alongside Ramsey County Attorney John Choi (Hamline Law ’95), Ramsey County Sheriff Jack Serier ‘90, St. Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell, Ramsey County Director of Public Health Anne Barry, Hamline’s Safety and Security Director Andrea Vircks, and Hamline Undergraduate Student Congress President Sara Anton.

“We are committed to continuing to cultivate a community in which prevention, training, and a thorough and thoughtful response are deeply embedded,” President Miller said at the rally. "To all of you, please know that Hamline is proud to stand by survivors and say 'You can come to us. You will be believed, and you will be supported.’”

By signing the agreement, the Hamline community proclaimed September 19, 2017 to be the launch of Start by Believing throughout the Hamline community and declared September to be Pipers Start by Believing Month. This is part of a nation-wide campaign that aims to unify communities with the message that survivors will be believed if they come forward to report sexual assault. The hope is to create communities in which survivors are more likely to report because they know they will feel safe and supported.

Hamline has been committed to prevention and training methods through various programs, trainings, awareness months, and campus-wide committees to support prevention of sexual misconduct. You can read more about these efforts on Hamline’s website.