Sexual Assault Awareness Month: Take Back the Night
April 24, 2019
Photo credit: Take Back The Night Foundation
While scrolling through my Facebook timeline recently, I saw that some of my friends were interested in an event called “Take Back the Night.” I’d heard about it in previous years but was never able to attend. This year I clicked “going” on the Facebook event page. My friends started reaching out to me and now, all 20 members of our school’s Women’s Issues Club will be attending the event! We’re excited to take part in a national movement with others who care about sexual assault awareness.
“It’s an amazing event that I love to participate in,” says Bella, 18, of Highland Park, NJ. “You can just feel a sense of community, it’s moving. Now I look forward to participating every year.”
Take Back the Night marches and rallies are held every April, in recognition of Sexual Assault Awareness month. Did you know that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
- More than one in three women and nearly one in four men experience sexual violence involving physical contact during their lifetimes
- One in three female rape victims and nearly one in four male rape victims experienced it for the first time between 11-17 years old
Plus, according to the latest National Crime Victimization Survey, about three out of four sexual assaults go unreported.
These numbers are devastating and unacceptable. Events like Take Back the Night can help bring awareness to how common sexual violence is as well as urge people to be upstanders (realizing when something is wrong and saying or doing something to help, as opposed to being a more passive “bystander”). Change starts with conversation. If sexual violence is not talked about, people will not recognize it as the major issue that it is.
There are Take Back the Night events taking place across the country. These marches provide an opportunity to speak out against sexual violence as well as bring awareness to the subject. Look out for a march near you! Check out their event page to get more information.