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Women's center advocate, Shawana, speaks with student Ari Burton at Denim Day. (Photo/Kim Ulmanis)
Women's center advocate, Shawana, speaks with student Ari Burton at Denim Day. (Photo/Kim Ulmanis)

UNLV Dons Denim to Raise Awareness About Sexual Assault

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The Jean Nidetch Women’s Center was encouraging UNLV students, faculty and staff to wear jeans on April 23, in honor of National Denim Day and Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM).

The office of UNLV President Don Snyder approved all faculty and staff to wear denim to work to show support.

The Jean Nidetch Women’s Center had a table out in the Valerie Pida Plaza with lots of informative flyers and posters on display.

The worldwide campaign gets its symbolism from an Italian Supreme Court ruling that overturned a rape conviction because the justices concluded that the victim, who was wearing tight jeans, must have helped her rapist remove the jeans, implying consent.

The next day, women from the Italian parliament wore jeans to work to show support to the victim.

Shawana, Jean Nidetch Women’s Center CARE advocate, says that the center hopes to not only show the UNLV campus what Denim Day is about, but also to raise awareness on Sexual Assault Awareness Month. The women’s center has a policy of not allowing advocates to release their last names to the media.

The center has many resources to keep people informed on what to do in situations that involve sexual violence, she said.

“Everyone should know how to safely intervene if they come across something like that,” Shawana said. “This is towards not only students, but to faculty and staff as well.”

People need to remember that there needs to be consent when engaging in any sexual activity, she said.

“Both parties need to want it and be at an agreement,” Shawana said. “If there is any question about whether or not the person actually agreed, just don’t do it. Rape ruins both the aggressor’s and victim’s life… you can go to prison.”

She says that no one should ever force another to have sex.

“Both parties have to give permission,” Shawana said. “Remember: No means no.”

For more information on sexual assault, call the UNLV CARE Line at (702) 895-0602.

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