Students met with UC Santa Barbara administrators and staff on Tuesday afternoon to discuss creating a sexual assault survivor resource center in Isla Vista, which would fulfill the first of the 12 demands agreed upon at a May 2017 sit-in.
The demand calls for a survivor resource center that will “lead programming efforts to spread awareness among the student body and throughout the off campus Isla Vista community.”
The center will also require a full-time director and staff, as well as legal service for sexual assault survivors.
Students at the Tuesday’s meeting asked that the center be effective for underrepresented communities, which they said should help in creating and managing the center.
The university requested $56,000 to secure the help of the Alliance for HOPE, a nonprofit agency that develops family justice centers to protect and heal sexual assault survivors and their families.
The university submitted the funding request in December, but the status will not be known until “spring time” of this year, said C.A.R.E. Director Briana Conway during the meeting.
An additional assessment proposal provides a “blueprint” for all constituents involved in planning the creation of a survivor resource center, Conway added.
Students expressed concern that collaborating with outside entities might not be effective in authentically representing the marginalized communities that the center aims to support.
Third-year communications major Jasmine Lee said a more concrete timeline of the two-year assessment proposal and the university funding request status would help student organizers search for alternate sources of funding.
She said the university needs to communicate with students about the financing process so they can take action as the funding comes through.
Katya Armistead, Dean of Student Life, said during the meeting that it can be “helpful to bring in an outsider to facilitate” the creation of the center.
Armistead also said the university must apply for grants in order to build the center. But the university already has other grants lined up, which might delay the approval of a grant for the center, she said.
Third-year global studies major Justice Dumlao requested that the center be part of the Associated Students Boards, Commissions and Units so the center can work closely and partner with student organizations and campus departments.
“This is not going to be C.A.R.E. out in I.V.,” Conway said, referring to the Campus Advocacy, Resources & Education program. “This is a separate, distinct resource.” Conway also explained that the center will be its own entity, independent from existing UCSB sexual assault survivor resources.
C.A.R.E. will still be a “strong partner” moving forward with the center, Conway added.
“This needs to be bigger than just C.A.R.E.,” she said.
There will be a follow-up meeting to further discuss the demand on March 6 at the Student Resource Building.
A version of this story appeared on pg. 3 of the Feb. 22, 2018 issue of the Daily Nexus.