New initiatives for students and the community
Community Relations Officer. In fall 2012, the Office of Public Safety hired Casey Gunter to act as UM’s Community Relations Officer. This officer is a liaison to students, especially those who live on campus. Casey is based out of Jesse Hall and is available across campus afternoons and evenings to meet students, talk with them and generally serve as a resource to them. He also holds sessions with Residence Life staff to encourage open discussion about sexual assault issues.
The Community Relations Officer is also an important liaison between UM and the community. In fall 2012, Casey worked with an officer from the Missoula City Police Department to put together a series of sexual assault and self defense seminars for women who live on and off campus.
Community Partners. The University has strengthened its partnership with the community’s First STEP Resource Center by adding a member to its Advisory Board.
Multidisciplinary Task Force. Missoula has an extraordinary resource in the Multidisciplinary Task Force, whose purpose is to maintain a unified approach to child abuse and adult sexual assault in Missoula County and other jurisdictions. In 2012, UM became a more active participant in the the task force by adding four more members to the team.
Student Education. An intensified series of forums and discussions regarding sexual assault began in early 2012. The series has included the Men Can Stop Rape program, which helped launch the Men of Strength club on campus to engage our male students more fully in prevention efforts. The club sponsors awareness events such as "Take Back the Oval," a yearly event protesting violence of all kinds, and held a trivia night to promote dialogue. The group also works with the Student Advocacy Resource Center Outreach program. Additionally, our students have held two on-campus forums and participated in a Montana University System forum during Spring Semester 2012.