Spelman College Supports the Fight Against Sexual Assault of Women During Denim Day 2015
ATLANTA (April 21, 2015) -- To help increase awareness and combat sexual violence against women, Spelman College will host a variety of events, April 20-24, in support of the global prevention and education campaign Denim Day 2015 and in recognition of National Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, college-aged women ages 18 to 24 still experience among the highest rate of rape and sexual assault victimization compared to females in all other age groups.
"Denim Day provides an opportunity for college campuses throughout the nation to take a unified stand in solidarity and support for victims of sexual assault and violence," said Cynthia Neal Spence, Ph.D., C’78, associate professor of sociology, director of the Spelman College Social Justice Fellows Program and director of the UNCF Mellon Programs. "Denim Day is fully embraced by Spelman College and is recognized as a College-wide day of solidarity for victims of sexual assault."
In addition to Denim Day, Spelman has addressed sexual violence through other initiatives, including the Sisters Chapel -sponsored “Arise, Awake and Act Against Sex Trafficking” conference, as well as a Sex Trafficking Education and Prevention series designed to education, prevent and respond to sexual assault and relationship violence.
"Spelman recognizes the vulnerability of women and girls who have been victimized by sexual assault," Dr. Spence added. "We respect and appreciate the strength of survivors. As an institution, we are committed to creating safe spaces for students to discuss the prevalence of sexual assault and violence in our society."
Hosted by students from the Women's Research and Resource Center and the Social Justice Fellows Program, Denim Day will feature a week of events, including a clothing drive; sex trafficking awareness training session; Convocation; a writing workshop for survivors of sexual assault; and a "Take Back the Night" rally and speak-out. Spelman students, faculty and staff will also join together Wednesday, April 22, to support the movement by wearing jeans as a sign of solidarity to end sexual violence on college campuses. In addition the campus community will exchange their gently used, non-offensive T-shirts for a Spelman College Denim Day T-shirt. The old T-shirts will be repurposed, filled with toiletries and donated to shelters serving women and children in metro Atlanta.
The following events are also planned:
April 20-24: 2015 Denim Day Shoebox Project: The Spelman community will join forces with the Bonner Office of Community Service and Student Development to support of women and children displaced due to sexual and domestic violence. Prepared shoeboxes with hygiene items will be donated to the United Way Shoebox Project. The project will take place in the Manley Board Room and Upper Manley Concourse.
Tuesday, April 21, at 11 a.m. in Sisters Chapel: Convocation will be a student-led discussion focusing on assumptions and myths about sexual assault and will feature campus professionals representing the Offices of Counseling and Health and Wellness.
Tuesday, April 21, at 7:30 p.m. at The Suites Amphitheatre: Take Back the Night Rally: Shatter the silence. Stop the violence. Take back the night! Students from Spelman and other AUC campuses will join together for this event.
Wednesday, April 22, at 7 p.m. on the Oval: A "Screen on the Green" film screening of Ntozake Shange’s “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf.
Thursday, April 23, at 1 p.m. in Giles Room 321: A classroom discussion on "Women, Values and Law" will focus on the impact of cultural values and norms upon legal and social discourse on rape and sexual assault.
Thursday, April 23, at 6 p.m. in Tapley Hall Room 130: Screening of "The Hunting Ground," a film about sexual assault on college and university campuses.
To view the complete schedule of events, please visit Denim Day @ Spelman.
About Denim Day
Denim Day is a project of Peace over Violence, a non-profit, feminist, multicultural, volunteer organization dedicated to building healthy relationships, families and communities free from sexual, domestic and interpersonal violence. Denim Day was launched in 1999, in protest of an Italian High Court ruling that overturned a rape conviction because the victim was wearing “tight” jeans.
About Spelman College
Founded in 1881, Spelman College is a highly selective, liberal arts college widely recognized as the global leader in the education of women of African descent. Located in Atlanta, Ga., the College’s picturesque campus is home to 2,100 students. Outstanding alumnae include Children's Defense Fund founder Marian Wright Edelman; Sam’s Club CEO Rosalind Brewer, Broadway producer Alia Jones, former Acting Surgeon General and Spelman’s first alumna President Audrey Forbes Manley, Harvard University professor Evelynn Hammonds, author Pearl Cleage and actress LaTanya Richardson Jackson. For more information, visit www.spelman.edu.
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About Spelman College
Founded in 1881, Spelman College is a highly selective, liberal arts college widely recognized as the global leader in the education of women of African descent. Located in Atlanta, Ga., the College’s picturesque campus is home to 2,100 students. Outstanding alumnae include Children's Defense Fund Founder Marian Wright Edelman, Sam’s Club CEO Rosalind Brewer, Former Acting Surgeon General and Spelman’s first alumna President Audrey Forbes Manley, Harvard University professor Evelynn Hammonds, author Pearl Cleage and actress LaTanya Richardson Jackson. For more information, visit www.spelman.edu.