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People walk and hold signs during YWCA Bradford's Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event. The event benefited the Victim's Resource Center

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month

Turn The Towns Teal 2024 (4)

 

YWCA Bradford reminds you April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM)


As part of the national 2024 “Our Voices Have Power. Together, We Can Build Safe and Respectful Communities” Campaign YWCA Bradford joins the National Sexual Violence Resource Center in empowering communities to Build Safe and Respectful Communities.


We all have a role to play in the prevention of sexual assault. YWCA Bradford has SAAM activities planned for this April. These include:


The YWCA is partnering with McKean County communities(Bradford, Eldred, Kane, Port Allegany and Smethport) to “Turn the Towns Teal” all April long in honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Teal is the color of Sexual Assault Awareness.


Starting April 1, 2024, McKean County will display teal ribbons on street poles. The ribbons will serve as a reminder of the free and confidential support that the YWCA Bradford provides in McKean County. Their free and confidential services are available 24 hours a day through their Toll-Free Hotline 1-888-822-6325.


A number of local businesses will also display teal ribbons in their windows and shop fronts. Athena Nutrition in Bradford and Stepping Stone in Smethport will help raise awareness with a teal specialty drink.

 

About YWCA Bradford’s Victims’ Resource Center

More than 60 percent of women and nearly 25 percent of men have experienced some form of sexual violence. About half of transgender individuals experience sexual assault in their lifetime.

Donate Today!The Victims’ Resource Center provides free services to help those experiencing sexual assault, including:

  • A 24-hour Hotline (1-888-822-6325)
  • Crisis Counseling
  • Emergency Shelter
  • Medical Advocacy and Accompaniment
  • Legal Advocacy & Accompaniment
  • Support Groups
  • Community and Prevention Education Programs
  • Transitional Housing and Outreach Services

"What Were You Wearing"

Survivors of sexual assault are often asked, “What were you wearing when you were attacked?’ This question implies that their clothing provoked the assault. This reflects the faulty reasoning that the victim is to blame and excuses their attacker. To dispel stereotypes and myths about rape, these exhibits present replicas of clothes worn by survivors of sexual assault. The survivors who participated in this project reflect the truth about people targeted by sexual predators. They are children, people with disabilities, males and females of various ages, sizes, and races. As you take in these exhibits, consider other myths about sexual assault it helps to dispel.


Denim Day: Why Denim?

Join us in wearing jeans on Wednesday, April 24th, for #DenimDay.

Please share any photos of those wearing denim on Facebook, tagging @ywcabradford. 

Denim Day began after a ruling by the Italian Supreme Court where a rape conviction was overturned because the justices felt that since the victim was wearing tight jeans, she must have helped the person who raped her remove her jeans, thereby implying consent. The following day, the women in the Italian Parliament came to work wearing jeans in solidarity with the victim. Peace Over Violence developed the Denim Day campaign in response to this case and the activism surrounding it. Since then, what started as a local campaign to bring awareness to victim blaming and destructive myths that surround sexual violence has grown into a movement.


Day of Action: Wear Teal Day

The day aims to stop sexual assault, harassment, and abuse before they happen through education. Teaching about consent and understanding boundaries is essential but requires societal change, too. Currently, the stigma of sexual assault rests with the victims. Until that view changes, sexual assault will continue to go unpunished.