ASWSU looks to fund violence prevention

WSU programs like Green Dot could end without new revenue



Regan Donaldson, ASWSU director of Health and Safety talks about staffing issues in the Green Dot program.

YASMEEN WAFAI, Evergreen assistant editor

Violence prevention programs on campus are facing low staff and a loss of funding, but ASWSU is looking to keep the programs alive.

After having conversations with Health & Wellness, ASWSU Vice President Garrett Kalt and President Jordan Frost decided they could gather support for violence prevention programs through a WSU Foundation endowment.

“[It’s] so extremely important for our campus,” Kalt said, “and to make sure every Coug feels safe here at WSU.”

He said the effort is still a work in progress, and ASWSU is cooperating with the WSU Foundation to create the endowment. He said he hopes it launch by late February or early March.

Kalt said the Green Dot program, which all first-year students are required to participate in, is mainly at risk, but that overall programming from Health & Wellness is in trouble due to diminishing grants and lack of staff.

To start an endowment, he said, ASWSU plans to pay a down payment using revenue from the Bookie.

These programs help prevent violence on college campuses, Kalt said, where certain social and situational factors can allow it to thrive.

He said it’s important for students to be educated on violence prevention, and he wants to make sure WSU has the necessary resources to ensure that happens.

“Here at Washington State,” Kalt said, “we need to take a stance and be proactive and make sure our students are knowledgeable, educated and take care of each other.”

If students do not feel safe on campus, he said, everything else about being a college student is stripped away from them. He said it can impact students’ ability to study and socialize, and can make them feel alone and stuck.

“These programs are essential to better our campus and pushing for the fight,” Kalt said. “It’s on Cougs to do this.”

In addition to the endowment, Kalt said there may be a resolution from the Senate in support of the endowment. He said that last year, the Senate unanimously passed resolutions to create more violence prevention efforts.

Regan Donaldson, ASWSU director of health and safety, said it is hard to go through the experience of sexual violence, so it is essential that the student body knows these issues matter and that WSU really cares.

“It’s one of [my] main goals,” Donaldson said.

Her position is new within ASWSU, and she said she hopes it will carry on into the next administration, because she believes these issues need to be addressed more aggressively.

Donaldson said she wants students to know they can get involved and make a difference by participating in upcoming fundraisers and by donating to the cause.

“It takes everyone to really put an end to it,” Donaldson said.