The West Linn police department has designed PUSH: a program to teach young women awareness about sexual assault, as well as physical defense. This three hour class is offered monthly at the West Linn police department, and it’s entirely free. PUSH leaders encourage you to bring a friend, though class size is limited.
“This was actually a class started by Kimberly Steele and Officer Bunch [who] SRO from last year,” said Officer Jeff Halverson, student resource officer. “So, I got brought into it because I’m the new SRO. I think it’s a really good program, I’ve added a few tweaks and we’re actually working with some of the wellness teachers to create something that’s gonna be targeted at the male students as well.” Halverson hopes to help male and female students avoid creating and finding themselves in dangerous situations. He continues, “So, we’re looking at protecting both male and female students.”
This class is specifically aimed at girls who are headed to college. It will coach them on awareness and the dangers of living alone for the first time. In addition, it will teach girls how to keep themselves and others safe on college campuses by offering physical protection training.
“He [Officer Bunch] thought it was important that we were sending young women off to college and out into life with just a little bit more experience on how to stay out of these situations,” Said Halverson. “And if they find themselves in these situations, how to protect themselves.”
““I think what we’re going to do is really more awareness. A lot of times guys get caught up into it, in the emotions and the hormones are running around crazy at that age,” said Halverson. “We’re really going to try to make not just the female students aware of staying out of those situations, but the male students aware of those situations that they are creating.”
For more information, students can contact officer Halverson.