IFC sponsors rape, drug seminar

Interfraternity Council Interim (IFC) Adviser Marissa Espinoza presents a donation to Leda Knee, counselor for the UCLA Rape Treatment Center, at IFC's Rape/Drug Seminar last Friday in Founders Auditorium. Knee and sophomore Sean Krispinsky shared their experiences about the new trend in date rape drugs, including Rohypnol and GHB. / photo by Scott Harvey
Interfraternity Council Interim (IFC) Adviser Marissa Espinoza presents a donation to Leda Knee, counselor for the UCLA Rape Treatment Center, at IFC’s Rape/Drug Seminar last Friday in Founders Auditorium. Knee and sophomore Sean Krispinsky shared their experiences about the new trend in date rape drugs, including Rohypnol and GHB. / photo by Scott Harvey

by Anna Maria Roy
For the Campus Times

The Interfraternity Council (IFC) sponsored the Rape/Drug Seminar last Friday. It featured Leda Knee from the UCLA Rape Treatment Center and sophomore Sean Krispinsky, who spoke about his experiences as a victim of Rohypnol.

The seminar was intended to educate the ULV community on the steady rise of drug-related rapes throughout the country, mainly college campuses.

“Our aim is to educate the entire ULV community,” a memorandum to students on behalf of the Council read. “Through this, we hope to prevent any instances harming our loved ones or ourselves.”

“This is something we need to tell everyone about. It’s a requirement for all IFC members to attend,” said IFC President Jeremy Houska.

Drugs like Rohypnol (also called “Roofies”) and Gamma-Hydroxybutyrate (GHB) are smuggled into the United States and then sold for a few dollars. They are readily available on the street and are used in dangerous and illegal ways. The drugs, which resemble aspirin, are put into the drinks of unknowing victims. Within 20 minutes of digestion, the drugs cause a sleepy, drunk, relaxed feeling, leaving the victim vulnerable to sexual assault, most likely rape.

The problem, which began in the 1970s, originated in Europe, and now exists in small and big cities alike. The critical problem is that the drugs are undetected to the human eye and dissolve within mere seconds. The drugs usually cannot be detected when they are taken by an individual, as they lack an odor, color and even a taste.

When taken with alcohol, as is usually the case, the effects of the drug are devastating. Amnesia and blackouts occur. In many instances, the sedative effects of Rohypnol can impair an individual’s judgment, and may result in comas, seizures and even death for its users.

Krispinsky was attending a fraternity party at UC Santa Barbara with friends when he was given the drug unintentionally. He took a drink intended for one of his female friends. The male student who had prepared the drink for the female warned Krispinsky not to drink it, but he did anyway, unaware of what was in it. Krispinsky returned to his room later that night.

“I was so disoriented that I couldn’t find my way out of the room,” he said. “I don’t recall a thing from that night, and I woke up with the worst feeling ever.”

Knee said victims of the drugs and of the drug-related rapes awaken feeling confused and sensing something wrong.

“Most rapes are caused by an acquaintance and are usually not reported. The rape needs to be reported by going to the hospital immediately, even if you are unsure or embarrassed. Otherwise, the person will probably do it again,” said Knee.

She also mentioned ways to prevent these circumstances, an individual should pour his or her own drinks, keep the drinks attended to at all times and look out for his or her friends.

The seminar ended with the presentation of a $250 donation from IFC to the UCLA Rape Treatment Center, which has been serving rape victims for free since the 1970s. An all-school picnic in the Quad followed the presentation. For more information on these matters, contact the University Health Center at ext. 4254.

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