Take Back The Night

Tackling the enormous problem of sexual violence begins with breaking its surrounding silence, and this year’s 34th annual Take Back the Night (TBTN) aims to do just that in a rally, march and speak-out event beginning 6 pm Thursday, April 25.

This year’s TBTN rally at the UO Amphitheater features speakers Maure Smith-Benanti, UO assistant director of LGBT Education and Support Services, and Patrick Lemon, co-founder of Men Can Stop Rape, and includes performances by the Radical Cheerleaders and Sexual Wellness Advocacy Team. Latin@ Youth Group Juventud Faceta will lead chants in English and Spanish during the march, and the speak out will begin at Cozmic with a spoken word performance by Andrea Valderrama, followed by participants sharing their experiences dealing with sexual violence.

Laura Doroteo of the UO Women’s Center says that talking about sexual assault in a way that supports survivors can help change societal beliefs. “In this society we do a lot of victim-blaming, and the idea that victims lie really discredits people who speak up,” she says. “Events like TBTN put blame where it should be — to the person who’s committing the act.” For more information, see http://wkly.ws/1ge.

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