Although the Naked Bike Ride has occurred at UVM for the last 21 years, each “ride” is different.
The event occurs annually on the last day of classes. In past years, the NBR has fallen on a Wednesday. In 2016, the event occurred Friday, Dec. 4.
The event was spearheaded by Erica Kutcher ‘00, who worked with the Mountain Lions Program and Outing Club in 1996 to get the event started, according to a May 3, 2010 Cynic article.
Unfortunately, Kutcher was killed in an avalanche in 2005, but the event has continued.
In 2008, the SGA and IRA questioned whether or not the event should continue because of the issues brought to their attention regarding women being harassed and assaulted during the NBR, according to the article.
The Mountain Lions Program used to manage the event and there were very little crime issues. But when they ceased management there were more reported assaults, according to the Cynic article.
During this year’s NBR, there were 11 violations reported in the crime log, five of which were labeled at ordinances regarding “intoxication,” according to UVM Police records.
There were no listed reports of sexual assault.
In 2015, there were 16 violations reported the night of NBR; one sexual assault happened at 2 p.m. the following day.
Going back as far as NBR’s 2012 statistics, there were 33 reported violations, 17 of which are “alcohol offenses” and no assault charges, according to the site.
It is believed that since more student involvement began, the event is much safer, according to the Cynic article.
This year, several rules continued to be implemented to ensure student safety.
RAs held mandatory meetings the night before the NBR to explain that students were required to have their CatCards to enter their residential halls. RAs were on duty to check student identification. Students were not allowed to be naked inside the halls.
“Historically, there is a lot of drug and alcohol use that evening,” Resident Director Joshelyn Ramirez said in an email to L/L residents. “This heightened use, combined with nakedness, leads to a rise in the number of sexual assaults and groping incidents.”
UVM CatAlerts state at the in every email sent out regarding sexual assault that “Sexual assault is never a victim’s fault.”
The University encourages that students in these circumstances seek aid from CAPS.