April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) and we are encouraging Treasure Valley community members to use their fashion statement to make a social statement on April 27, 2016 for Denim Day. Show your support and solidarity with survivors of sexual assault by wearing denim.
We ask you to wear denim for a specific reason. In the 1990s, a young woman was picked up by her male driving instructor, taken to an isolated area and forcefully raped. He was initially arrested, convicted and sentenced to prison. When he appealed, his conviction was overturned because the justices felt that because the victim was wearing tight jeans she must have had to help him remove them, thus implying consent. Enraged by this verdict, the women in the Italian Parliament wore jeans to work in solidarity with the victim. You can learn the history of Denim Day here and about the WCA event here.
Our community can come together to bring awareness to the dangers of placing blame on the survivor of an assault, rather than where the blame truly lies — with the perpetrator. Within our culture we will find countless cases of victim-blaming, mentioning how if that person had just not drank, had checked in with a friend or not worn a pair of jeans then they would not have been assaulted.
Sexual assault and victim blaming are issues that not only demand your attention – they deserve your action. We would love for you to join us in Denim Day to help raise awareness of these issues and increase visibility of the local resources available to victims of sexual assault and victim blaming.
There are four ways you can get involved:
- Wear denim on Wednesday April 27, 2016.
- Post photos of you and your friends, family or coworkers wearing denim using the hashtags #DenimDay and #WCABoise
- Have ribbons, stickers and postcards available to start a conversation about the purpose of Denim Day. You can download the WCA Denim Day Toolkit here and request Denim Day materials from our website here.
- Host an awareness campaign or fundraising event
Joining together on April 27 is about more than wearing jeans — it allows us to raise awareness of the immediacy and reality of these problems in our community. Together our community is working to create change where we do not blame survivors, rather we place the blame solely with those responsible — the assaulters. Your support will help start the conversations around the issues that will allow us to create lasting change. Wear denim on April 27 and join the WCA at our many events commemorating Denim Day. The impact of a simple pair of jeans cannot be overstated.
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