McMaster’s new learning module fosters a culture of consent
Natalie Lafleur, Wil Prakash Fujarczuk, and Lenore Lukasik-Foss from McMaster’s Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office are leading the delivery of the It Takes All of Us module.
Content warning: Contains reference to sexual violence.
Starting this month, McMaster will begin offering It Takes All of Us, an online learning module developed to increase awareness of gender-based and sexual violence. All incoming undergraduate and graduate students at McMaster will be automatically enrolled on Avenue to Learn as of August 14 and all other students are encouraged to take the module, although completion is optional.
McMaster’s Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office (SVPRO) is leading the delivery of the module, which was first delivered at Concordia University in 2019 and is now delivered at many other institutions across Canada. The module addresses the topics of consent, bystander intervention, supporting survivors and accessing resources.
“This is part of McMaster’s ongoing commitment to creating a campus community free of gender-based and sexual violence. To do this, we know that it takes all of us. That is why every student is encouraged to deepen their understanding and knowledge by taking this module,” says Barrington Walker, vice-provost, equity and inclusion.
“Having these conversations can be difficult, but we know that by having them, we can create communities of support and prevention.”
The new learning module is being promoted on social media and at Welcome Week and orientation events, including at Mac Welcome, an event for incoming students hosted by consent-educating drag persona, Unita Assk.
It Takes All of Us will be available on Avenue to Learn. Students returning to McMaster can learn more about signing up for the module and find answers to frequently asked questions on McMaster’s Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office (SVPRO)’s It Takes All of Us webpage. Staff and faculty who wish to view the module will be able to self-enroll by the end of August. Information for staff and faculty is also available on the webpage.
The module is one part of a growing list of initiatives from the Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office (SVPRO) as it expands and finds new ways to connect with students during the start of the semester and through the school year.
Other initiatives include high-visibility signs across campus explaining what consent is and why it matters, drop-in chats with support professionals, a robust peer educator program, bystander intervention initiatives and a slate of year-round programming.
SVPRO’s aim is to train every student leader and many others in the campus community to prevent harm and to respond effectively to disclosures of sexual violence. The SVPRO collaborates with community partners such as the Sexual Assault Centre of Hamilton Area (SACHA) and also leads initiatives to ensure students, staff and faculty are aware of the support and resources it offers. Learn more about how McMaster is creating a campus free of gender-based and sexual violence on McMaster’s Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office (SVPRO)’s It Takes All of Us website.
Everyone is encouraged to take care while taking the module, including pausing to take breaks if needed, and to connect with the SVPRO team for support at any time.