This month is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. This month is dedicated to raising awareness about relationship violence and sexual assault across the country and the global community. The movement began in the 1970’s when women started doing protests against the violence they experienced when walking through the streets at night. Throughout the years, individuals have raised awareness during the month of April every year by providing education that anyone can help prevent sexual assault– by holding protests, providing resources, promoting respect to end sexual assault in the workplace, and more.
What is SSU doing this current month? This past week, April 19 – 22 is #EnoughIsEnough week. Here are the events that occurred:
Monday: Vikings Give – Starbucks Cafe 7 – 10 PM
Tuesday : 1 – 5 PM NOH8 Photo Shoot, Alumni Plaza
Wednesday: Walk A Mile in her shoes – Marsh Quad 5 -7 PM
Thursday: Fashion Show with Sisters on the Runway. Okeefe Gym 5 – 8 pm
Friday: Clothesline Project, Library Quad 10 am – 12 pm
Friday: Vikings Take the Pledge Underground 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM
Why are SSU students taking a stand against relationship violence and sexual assault? It’s been a problem in society, and especially on college campuses for years- way before Sexual Assault Awareness month’s inception- and continues to be a problem. According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC), there is still a lot of education needed on the fears, myths, and stereotypes around sexual violence and what/who it affects.
According to the NSVRC, in a nationally representative survey of adults, 37.4% of female rape victims were first raped between ages 18-24, which is college-age. 40% of colleges and universities reported not investigating a single sexual assault in the previous five years. 30 % of colleges and universities offered no training on sexual assault to students nor law enforcement officers, also according to the NSVRC. Ending sexual assault isn’t just up to the victim and the aggressor, it’s up to bystanders as well. That’s why SAAM is trying to educate as much as they can, not only during this month, but every day of the year.
“It’s especially important for these discussions to happen on college campuses because it is so common that in many cases it is overlooked or downplayed, by students and even staff.”
- Dominique Resendes, Vice President of the Florence Luscomb Women’s Center
Let’s see some pictures of SSU Students participating this week:
Students wearing their NOH8 paint to address domestic violence, sexual assault, and consent, and more. Photos courtesy of the Salem State University Alliance.