There is no excuse to rape: La Strada’s employees wear jeans in solidarity with victims of sexual assault

A couple days before Denim Day La Strada’s employees decided to become, for one day, the voices of women who have experienced sexual abuse.

Just like last year, they choose to say There is no excuse to rape by participating in a special photo shoot. But this time every single participant at the photo shooting consciously represented a true story of a sexual assaulted woman or girl (these were the testimonials of Women and Girls Trusline 0 8008 8008, although the names of the beneficiaries have been changed for reasons of confidentiality). "This is our way to tell girls and women who have suffered from a rape that they are not alone, that they can ask for our support, and that we will continue to do our best so that their voices can be heard and their rights enforced, "said Daniela MISAIL-NICHITIN, Director of the Women's Program, La Strada.

Additionally, in the context of current Denim Day Moldova campaign, we are planning to have a special dialogue with the media representatives in our country on the coverage of sexual abuse cases in mass-media. "We are trying to identify and cooperate with a community of journalists interested in supporting the cause of the victims of sexual abuse through ethical journalism," Daniela MISAIL-NICHITIN said.  

The role of media contents in our society is enormous and sometimes decisive. The way a case of rape is approached by the press, the tone of a report or a news headline are more than a journalist's personal decisions. 

We urge media representatives to support Denim Day Moldova by showing solidarity with the victims of sexual violence through responsible and ethical journalism - today, on April 24th, and every single day when you choose to reflect a case of sexual violence or to deal with the phenomenon of sexual abuse, in general. We encourage you to find your own way to prevent and combat the abuse and sexual violence, in accordance with your own beliefs and values and taking into account deontological rules.

We urge the professional’s community, civil society and every citizen to do everything they can to end the rape culture in our society. We can choose to support financially an organization that provides assistance and support to victims of sexual violence; we can wear jeans on April 24 at work and encourage our colleagues to do the same in solidarity with victims of sexual abuse; we can talk on social media about self-education, about what physical and sexual integrity means, what is a freely expressed consent or we can combat gender based stereotypes through rational arguments. 

The Denim Day Initiative in the Republic of Moldova is implemented with the support of the United States Embassy in Moldova.

Background: The history of "Denim Day" began in 1992, in Italy. The campaign was originally triggered by a decision of the Italian Supreme Court (1990), where a rape conviction was overturned because the justices felt that since the victim was wearing tight jeans she must have helped her rapist remove her jeans, thereby implying consent. The next day, the women in the Italian Parliament came to work wearing jeans in solidarity with the victim. Since then, wearing jeans on the last Wednesday of April has become a symbol of protest against erroneous and destructive attitudes about sexual assault.For more than 20 years in Europe and USA the Denim Day Campaign is organized to raise the awareness and promote zero tolerance towards the sexual violence.

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