Safe learning, College defends against domestic violence

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Wally Perez

Director explains how this college handles domestic violence.

By Sasha D. Robinson

sac-ranger@alamo.edu

Jacob-Aidan Martinez, director of student conduct and Title IX, said if a student brings an allegation of domestic violence from another student, the school will investigate immediately.

Domestic violence is the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault and/or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another.

Kellee Clark, 37, of Raleigh, N.C., was married six years to a man who was abusive.

In a phone interview Feb. 6, Clark talked about what she went through in her marriage.

“The abuse was more biblical than verbal,” Clark said.

“He would use the Bible to his benefit, instead of what the word said.”

Clark said when she got out of surgery, he would tell her a woman’s duty was to give him sex when he wanted it.

“That’s not what the Bible said, and it was not going to happen,” Clark said.

Clark said there was no peace when she got home and felt she had to walk on eggshells to avoid an argument.

“I understand that people get mad, but when tempers get raised, objects get thrown and broken, it has gone too far,” she said.

“Your house is supposed to be your sanctuary; it felt like there was no respect for me.”

The student conduct and Title IX office promotes the SAC Cares Initiative.

SAC Cares includes student incidents such as student misconduct, Title IX, student petitions and student non-academic complaints.

The mission statement for student conduct and Title IX is to empower this college’s diverse student population to continually view proper conduct as a wise undertaking as well as an integral part of personal development and academic success.

According to www.justice.gov, Title IX is a comprehensive federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded education program or activity.

The principal objective of Title IX is to avoid the use of federal money to support sex discrimination in education programs and to provide individual citizens effective protection against those practices.

The student conduct office does preventive programs every month to bring awareness to be proactive, and not reactive.

The office will act as a liaison between the students and teachers.

They will talk to the teachers to set up a new schedule, extend deadlines, or create independent study.

Martinez said the first thing they will do is ask students if they want to see a counselor.

The second step depends on if the accused is a student, and how serious the accusation is.

There can be a no-contact order, and if the student is in the same class as the accused, then they can be removed.

If it is determined that it is serious, the accused will be placed on an interim suspension that will continue until the investigation concludes.

The forms of domestic violence are physical, psychological, emotional, sexual, electronic and stalking.

Electronic domestic violence is repeated texting and/or calling, posting sexual pictures of a partner online, and posting lies about a partner online.

“If you are cyber bullying or make a threat, then we can investigate,” Martinez said.

“If someone reports that you are harassing them via social media, we will investigate, and if it can be determined that it is you, no matter if it is social media or in person, it is harassment.”

It is tough when the one who is abusing is not a student; the office can’t investigate.

They do ask the victim to file a police report and encourage the student to press charges.

Men can be victims of domestic violence and should not be ashamed of coming to the office if they need help.

“We take it very seriously regardless of who you are or what you identify with. Abuse is abuse,” Martinez said.

According to healthlibrary.epnet, “Battered Men: The Painful Truth” by Robert Bittner and Dr. R.L McNeely, of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, society’s long-standing belief is that men are typically stronger than women.

According to McNeely, a woman lashes out for the same reasons men do.

If you see someone getting abused on campus, do not try to be a hero.

“You do not know what the other individual is capable of,” Martinez said. “They may have a gun, knife or some sort of weapon, and if you intervene, you may be the one dead.”

Call the campus emergency line at 210-485-0911; keep an eye on the incident so you do not lose sight until the police arrive.

Making a false allegation of domestic violence just to get a student in trouble is against the law.

“You put the accused in a position, waste the office’s time and resources, and take away from someone who really needs help,” Martinez said.

“If someone asks you out one time, it is not considered harassment. If you ask someone out multiple times and they say no plus you are making them feel uncomfortable, then it is harassment.”

The statistics from 2013-2015 show this college had one incident of domestic violence on campus in 2014 and one of dating violence in 2015.

The student conduct and Title IX office is temporarily in Room 101 of the nursing complex.

The office hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Call 210-486-0926 or send an email to sac-cares@alamo.edu.

 

Watch for these signs

According to www.webmd.com, there are several signs or characteristics that could lead to domestic violence. Keep watch for indications that your significant other:

• Controls what you do, who you see, talk to or where you go.

• Stops you from seeing your friends or family members.

• Takes your money or paycheck, makes you ask for money or refuses to give you money.

• Makes all of the decisions.

• Threatens to kill himself or herself.

• Acts like the abuse is no big deal or your fault.

• Intimidates you with guns, knives or other weapons.

• Shoves, slaps, chokes or hits you.

• Threatens to kill you.

 

Where to get help

If you or someone you know is in a dangerous situation, call one of these area agencies.

• Battered Women’s Shelter of Bexar County 210-733-8810

• Guadalupe Valley Family Violence Shelter 830-372-5971; 800-834-5970

Crisis Center of Comal County 830-620-4357; 800-434-8013

• SAPD Victims Advocacy Services 210-207-2141

• Family Justice Center and Family Violence Prevention Services 210-930-3669

• The local United Way 211

• Texas Department of Family and Protective Services Hotline 800-252-5400

In an emergency, call the police, EMS or fire services at 911.

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