SOURCE: Cosmopolitan

Cosmopolitan

August 18, 2011 10:38 ET

Cosmopolitan Partners With SAFER to Launch Campaign to Fight Rape on Campus

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - Aug 18, 2011) - Cosmopolitan, the world's largest-selling young women's magazine and the number one magazine on college campuses, announced today that it is partnering with national nonprofit organization Students Active for Ending Rape (SAFER) to launch a new campaign: Cosmopolitan Fights Campus Rape. The campaign -- which includes a monthly column that will run through the academic year (from the September 2011 to June 2012 issue) and a webpage, cosmopolitan.com/campus-rape -- will urge Cosmo readers to improve their school's sexual-assault policy, raise awareness about the issue, and ideally help reduce the number of rapes that occur.

Cosmopolitan has published dozens of articles over the years on sexual assault with essential advice on how young women can protect themselves. The magazine's latest efforts are timed with guidelines issued by Vice President Joe Biden this past April to help colleges address this enormous problem -- the U.S. Department of Justice estimates that 1 in 5 female college students will be the victim of rape or attempted rape, yet fewer than 5 percent of victims report the crime.

To further the cause, Cosmo is asking readers to send their college's sexual assault policy to SAFER, who will show students how to analyze it and assess which elements need improvement and will then list the results at safercampus.org/policies. SAFER will also give students guidance about how to work with officials at their college to make changes to their policy so that it offers rape victims better support and protection.

"Campus rape is a widespread issue, but unfortunately, some colleges don't adequately support the victims or punish the assailants," said Cosmopolitan Editor-in-Chief Kate White. "We want to build awareness and inform women of their rights. Our first goal is to get as many colleges registered in SAFER's database, and we will follow up with additional initiatives both in the print magazine and on our website in the coming months."

"We are thrilled to be working with Cosmopolitan to bring awareness and activism to this important issue," said Deesha Narichania, Partnerships Coordinator at SAFER. "For a long time, schools have been placing the responsibility for preventing sexual violence on potential victims. With this partnership, we hope to empower students to hold their schools accountable. A strong policy is vital because it reflects the institution's commitment to student safety and can mitigate some of the many barriers a student faces when trying to report a sexual assault. This exciting collaboration between SAFER and Cosmopolitan will expand the dialogue around sexual assault and further support students in inciting change in their campus communities."

Cosmopolitan's inaugural column will include a 4-page feature about the campus-rape problem and a sidebar with information about when and where campus rapes happen as well as an item about two students who changed The City University of New York sexual-assault policy with SAFER's guidance. The items in the column will change each month, addressing various aspects of campus violence.

About Cosmopolitan
Cosmopolitan (cosmopolitan.com) is the best-selling young women's magazine in the U.S., a bible for fun, fearless females that reaches more than 18 million readers a month. Cosmopolitan delivers the latest news on men and love, fashion and beauty, women's health and self-improvement, and entertainment. In addition to its U.S. flagship, Cosmopolitan publishes 60 editions around the world. Hearst Magazines, a unit of Hearst Corporation (hearst.com) and one of the world's largest publishers of monthly magazines, with nearly 200 editions around the world, including 15 U.S. titles and 20 magazines in the United Kingdom, published through its wholly owned subsidiary The National Magazine Company Limited. Hearst Magazines is the leading publisher of monthly magazines in the U.S. in terms of total circulation (ABC, Dec. 2009) and reaches 73 million adults (MRI, Fall 2009).

About SAFER
Students Active for Ending Rape (SAFER) is a volunteer-run organization that has been training and supporting student activists for a decade. SAFER offers comprehensive programming to support student-led movements for campus sexual-assault-policy reform. In addition to the Campus Accountability Project Policies Database, SAFER's website houses the Activist Resource Center, an online library of tools for organizers. SAFER also runs a national, in-person training program to help students kick-start policy-reform campaigns and offers ongoing mentoring through the Activist Mentoring Program.

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