Note: This letter originally appeared as an email sent to the Hopkins community on November 5, 2021.
Earlier this week, the university sent a public safety message about a potential student drugging incident over the weekend. The message included a series of safety tips, and soon after it went out we received important feedback from members of our university community that the framing and language of those tips implied that responsibility for prevention of an incident like this lies with the victim. This was a mistake on our part, and we apologize. The type of conduct that was alleged—intentional drugging without consent—is illegal and abhorrent. A person subjected to such a crime is never at fault.
With regard to the incident itself, the university is continuing to investigate. We are in the process of gathering all available information and evidence, and known parties and witnesses have been directed to cooperate. No conclusions or findings have been determined at this time. As is our standard protocol in circumstances like this, the fraternity where the incident was alleged to have occurred, Sigma Phi Epsilon, has been directed by Student Affairs not to hold any social activities and events until the investigation is concluded. If you have any information about this incident, please contact StudentAffairs@jhu.edu.
Gender Violence Prevention Resources
While the incident currently under investigation does not include any accusations of sexual misconduct or assault, we want to take this opportunity to make our community aware of the efforts underway and the resources that have been created to ensure gender-based violence is prevented and not tolerated at JHU. The university’s Sexual Violence Advisory Committee, which is comprised of students, faculty, and staff, advises university leaders on sexual violence prevention efforts and education. Programs such as our newly launched consent campaign,bystander intervention training (BIT), and expansion of confidential resources to support students, are just some of the ways that we hope to collectively create a culture of inclusion and safety at Hopkins.
JHU’s staff experts in gender violence prevention and education also have developed evidence-based guidance on how to create safe communities, recommendations for how to support survivors, and resources for reporting incidents, which can be found here. Additionally, we would like all JHU affiliates to be aware of the following resources:
Sexual Assault Help Line. Talk with a counselor and seek support for emotional trauma. At the university, victims may speak with a confidential counselor by calling the university’s Sexual Assault Help Line (410-516-7333).
Center for Health Education and Well-Being (CHEW). Confidential staff in CHEW are here to support students and trainees. Community members can reach Alyse Campbell, Associate Director of Student Well-Being firstname.lastname@example.org or 410-516-5133. Virtual and in-person meetings are available.
Report to Campus Security or Baltimore City Police. Timely and accurate reporting is critical to crime prevention. Everyone is reminded to contact Campus Safety and Security at 410-516-7777 or Baltimore City Police at 911 immediately to report any suspicious person(s) or activity.
The Sexual Assault Resources Unit (SARU). SARU runs a peer support line for those affected by sexual assault and individuals who are concerned about a friend or loved one. The support line is staffed by student responders. SARU also provides peer education focused primarily on what constitutes consent, what factors contribute to rape culture, and how to respond appropriately to survivors. To contact the SARU support line call 410-516-7887 or email at email@example.com.
The health and safety of all members of our community is our first priority, and we appreciate the feedback we received regarding Monday night’s public safety message.
Vice Provost for Student Health & Well-Being
Interim Vice Provost for Student Affairs
Johns Hopkins University
Vice President for Public Safety
Johns Hopkins University and Medicine
Vice Provost for Institutional Equity
Johns Hopkins University