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“These messages sickened us,” ‘Offensive’ banners posted outside home near university

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NORFOLK, Va. - A university in Virginia received some unwanted attention following a few banners that were posted on an off-campus home.

"At ODU, we foster a community of respect and dignity and these messages sickened us," said Giovanna Genard, a spokeswoman for Old Dominion University.

The signs, which appeared outside a nearby home, had the following messages:

  • "Rowdy and fun. Hope your baby girl is ready for a good time."
  • "Freshman daughter drop off."
  • "Go ahead and drop off mom too."

Old Dominion University President John Broderick sent the following statement faculty, staff and students.

“Dear Colleague:

I am outraged about the offensive message directed toward women that was visible for a time on 43rd Street. Our students, campus community and alumni have been offended.

While we constantly educate students, faculty and staff about sexual assault and sexual harassment, this incident confirms our collective efforts are still failing to register with some.

A young lady I talked to earlier today courageously described the true meaning of the hurt this caused. She thought seriously about going back home.

But she was heartened, she explained, when she saw how fellow students were reacting to this incident on social media. She realized this callous and senseless act did not reflect the Old Dominion she has come to love.

The Student Government Association has recently developed the “Monarchs Raising Up” campaign educating our students on prevention of sexual and relationship violence, bystander intervention, and off-campus responsible behavior. Through video, online and in-person content, we layer education on these topics for all of our students throughout the year. All new freshman just received education this weekend on preventing discrimination and sexual assault in sessions we call “First Class.”

Here is a link to a video from our student leaders responding to this event–just one example of how Old Dominion University students take a stand every day in regards to respecting each other and promoting responsible behavior: https://youtu.be/NC72ruvRtdY

I said at my State of the University address that there is zero tolerance on this campus for sexual assault and sexual harassment. This incident will be reviewed immediately by those on campus empowered to do so. Any student found to have violated the code of conduct will be subject to disciplinary action.

Sincerely,

John R. Broderick”

 

Students told WTKR that Sigma Nu fraternity brothers live in the home.

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