A new ad campaign is looking to tackle the issue of rape on college campuses using the medium of college acceptance letters. In a new spot called “The Unacceptable Acceptance Letters,” students are shown reading a university acceptance letter that takes a startling turn.
The letters claim that they are happy that the prospective students will make “lifelong memories here on campus,” but adds, “We’re sorry that one of these memories will include being raped by someone you thought you could trust.” The whole ad is shot to look like a home video so that it feels like the actors are real teens reading these unsettling letters. In addition to the main ad, the campaign has uploaded individual acceptance letter clips to their YouTube channel.
The videos come with a message from a campaign to hold colleges accountable for their treatment of on-campus rape.
“1 in 5 women and 1 in 16 men are sexually assaulted in college. Colleges across the country continue to underreport or even completely ignore these attacks, failing the same students they promised to protect. If they accept you, don’t accept this.”
The campaign also placed ads in the Harvard Crimson and USA Today that showed one of the acceptance letters and included a paragraph from the point of view of a school that is willfully ignoring claims of rape.
“The claims you make against your rapist will be ignored, much like your right to feel safe at school. After all, you can’t expect us to expel somebody on the basis of a story that begins with ‘I had been drinking.'”
The campaign’s website allows users to enter their name, zip code, email address and college to send a form letter to administrators urging them to take steps to combat rape.