If you were wondering why people were dressed a little more casual than usual Wednesday, it was for a good reason. April 29th was Denim Day, a campaign started 16 years ago in response to an overturned rape conviction in Italy because the victim was wearing tight jeans.
With April being Sexual Awareness Month, Denim Day has become the highlight and a way to bring attention to the misconceptions that surround sexual assaults. In addition to a progressive online campaign, many communities, campuses, and organizations participated in events as a show of support to end sexual violence.
This year’s event in Sacramento took place on the West steps of the Capital, which was attended by a number of legislators that have authored, sponsored, or supported bills to help bring justice to victims of sexual and domestic violence.
“This event pushes back on the culture that it is okay and everybody is doing it,” said Senator Jean Fuller. “Someone will hear and know that they can be helped and reach out.”
The Victim Services Grants Division at Cal OES provides funding to programs serving victims of sexual assault, as well as domestic violence and child abuse. The sexual assault programs are designed to address sexual violence through a variety of efforts including education and training, rape crisis centers, and the training of forensic medical personnel.
“Last year over 26,000 survivors of sexual assault were provided crisis intervention services in California and almost 13,000 survivors received advocacy services,” said CalOES Assistant Director of Grants Management Gina Buccieri-Harrington. “However, our work is far from finished.”
Those attending the event this year were welcomed to sign a “Pledge To End Sexual Violence” board, which was filled with signatures by the end of the day. Visit DenimDayInfo.org for more information.