Riverhawk athletes say no harassment at AACC


Photo by Raquel Hamner

Whether or not athletes engage in so-called “locker room talk,” Riverhawks say they have not been sexually harassed on campus.

Vincent Moreland, Sports Editor

AACC athletes said they have not witnessed or experienced sexual harassment on campus.

In a Campus Current survey of 338 AACC students, none of the 34 athletes who participated said they have been sexually harassed at AACC.

Two female athletes and six male athletes said they have been sexually harassed off campus. Six athletes did not respond to the question.

Cailin Jones, a second-year Women’s Basketball center and dual cyber security and digital forensics student, told Campus Current she hopes she never sees sexual harassment on campus.

“Sexual harassment is a gateway for other types of abuse, and those people who brush or laugh it off or sweep it under the rug do more damage,” Jones said.

She added: “We need to do away [with] the common misconception that only women can be victims of sexual harassment. Men can be targets as well.”

Still, some athletes who spoke to Campus Current said things are different at universities.
“It’s definitely an issue,” second-year Men’s Lacrosse defender Justin Walsh said.

Daja Burnett, a first-year Women’s Basketball guard/forward and music business student, agreed.

She said female athletes “feel belittled and thrown to the side so that teams and colleges can look successful,” and that can lead to unfair treatment when they complain about sexual harassment and assault.

“It’s upsetting,” she said.

Second-year lacrosse captain Dylan Morton said female athletes are not at risk and male athletes are not guilty of sexual harassment at universities.

“I can see why some might think they are at risk, since athletes are popular at college campuses and get a lot of publicity,” Morton said.

An AACC athlete who requested to remain anonymous said: “I mean it happens. You just don’t hear about it. But it definitely happens. Athlete women versus a regular female college student? Who do you think [administration] will care about more, as crazy as it sounds? Administration looks out for athletes more.”