Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Baylor Alums, Students Standing Up Following Rape Cases

An open letter from a Baylor graduate seeking signatures of support from other members of the Baylor community aims to hold BU administrators accountable for unacceptable responses to student victims of sexual assaults committed by then-Baylor football players.

Laura Seay, a 2000 Baylor graduate who got her PhD at Texas and is now a professor at Colby College in Maine, has written an "Open Letter On Responses to Sexual Assault at Baylor University" linked below:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1-uQb3fjYNnroylpLL5hw2yEOXCp0fr_w0plnY-dR-bY/viewform

The letter was posted Saturday afternoon and had collected 250 signatures in support within the first hour of it being posted.

The letter asks "the University provide a clear statement of the steps that it is taking to ensure that its policies are being implemented competently and consistently, as well as strengthen its existing practices."

There is also a student vigil planned Monday night on the lawn of Baylor president and chancellor Ken Starr. More information is available on the event at the Facebook page for "Survivors' Stand" (linked here): 

https://www.facebook.com/events/1219350051427622/

The letter also refers to a blog posted Feb. 4 by Stefanie Mundhenk titled "I Was Raped At Baylor - And This Is My Story" (linked here) 

http://musingsofstef.blogspot.com/2016/02/i-was-raped-at-baylor-and-this...

I wrote an open letter to Ken Starr back in August, when former Baylor football DE Sam Ukwuachu's rape victim, a Baylor women's soccer player, had her claims basically ignored. That after former BU football player Tevin Elliott was convicted of raping a Baylor student with four other victims coming forward during that trial.

http://www.scout.com/college/texas/story/1578313-some-questions-for-bayl...

It's clear the Baylor community is rising up and demanding answers and accountability from the leadership of its university following multiple reports that student victims of the sexual assaults committed on campus by Elliott and Ukwuachu  were completely mishandled.

"Baylor's failure to adequately serve survivors of sexual assault compromises the University's Christian identity," Seay's open letter states.

"Parents must know that their children will be safe at Baylor, and students must be assured that should the unthinkable happen, their decision to report sexual assault will be met with the University's full support and resources."

Seay told me on Saturday she was moved to write the letter after seeing ESPN's Outside The Lines report last week that included first-hand reports from victims of rapes committed by Elliott who said their reports were met by BU officials with little to no compassion.

"When I was a student at Baylor, there was a tendency to think sexual assault doesn't happen at Baylor because we're a good, Christian university," Seay said. 

"But we've been seeing all these increasingly disturbing reports regarding sexual assaults happening at Baylor and not being responded to appropriately. We need to stand up and think proactively and demand that sexual assault survivors  at Baylor be treated with the utmost dignity and respect and be protected.

"It's going to take a lot of work for Baylor to rebuild the confidence and trust of its constituency. If I was a parent of a child considering Baylor, I don't know if I'd feel comfortable sending my child there."


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