April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month

Apr 3, 2023

April 2023 marks the official 22nd anniversary of Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM). Fresno City College joins in the effort to bring recognition and acknowledgement to this impactful movement.

Information on how to report a sexual assault can be found on the Fresno City College Website at https://www.fresnocitycollege.edu/about/title-ix/report.html

To spread awareness on sexual assault and promote Sexual Assault Awareness Month, Fresno City College will host Denim Day on Wednesday, April 26 from 11 am – 1 pm in Veterans Square. Students and staff may participate in the movement by wearing denim. At this event, students and staff will learn more about Denim Day, SAAM, on and off campus resources, and meet members of Psychological Services, Health Services, SCCCD PD, the Deputy Title IX Coordinator for FCC, Marjaree Mason Center, and the Rape Counseling Services of Fresno. Additionally, students and staff are highly encouraged to take photos with props/frame and write messages to survivors to commemorate sexual assault survivors, Denim Day, and SAAM.

History of Sexual Assault Awareness Month

Observed as an opportunity to promote education and the prevention of sexual violence, assault, harassment, and abuse, Sexual Assault Awareness Month traces its history to the 1970s, when activists first began organizing on a national scale to reduce sexual assault and violence against women. Advocates fought tirelessly to bring a topic once taboo for public discussion out of the shadows and shed light on the widespread problem of sexual assault.

The first rape crisis center in the U.S., Bay Area Women Against Rape, opened in 1971, with the dual goals of providing counseling and advocacy to survivors and educating the community. Their work paved the way for more groups and coalitions, and in 1976, the first Take Back the Night rally brought increased visibility as activists organized more public events. Take Back the Night, a series of marches organized to protest rape and sexual assault, broadcast the message that women should not be afraid to be out at night.

By the 1980s, the National Coalition Against Sexual Assault was mobilizing groups across the country to take action at higher levels. In 1994, after a long campaign, Congress passed the Violence Against Women Act, the first legislation to require law enforcement to treat domestic violence as a crime and not a private matter.

In 2001, the first official Sexual Assault Awareness Month once again brought the issue into public consciousness and reinvigorated a national network of events and support groups that raise awareness and provide resources to survivors and those at risk.

For more information contact gladdey.donsanouphit@fresnocitycollege.edu



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