09 March, 2012

Denim Day - April 25th

Rome – Italy, 1997
An 18-year-old girl is picked up by her 45-year-old instructor for her very first driving lesson. An hour later, raped and abandoned by him in alley, she has to make her way back home. Undeterred, she reports the incident and the case is prosecuted. The driving instructor is convicted of rape and sentenced to jail.
Months Later…

The perpetrator appeals the sentence. The case makes it all the way to the Italian Supreme Court, where the case against the driving instructor is overturned and the perpetrator is released. In a statement released by the Head Judge, he argued, “Because the victim wore very, very tight jeans, she had to help him remove them…and by removing the jeans…it was no longer rape but consensual sex.” Enraged by the verdict, the women in the Italian Parliament launched into immediate action and protested by wearing jeans on the steps of the Italian Parliament building. This call to action motivated and emboldened the California Senate and Assembly to do the same—and a movement was born.

Denim Day has become a worldwide event that calls to community members and elected officials to stand with survivors of sexual assault to wear denim in protest of what happened in Italy in 1997. This is a time to raise awareness about sexual assault, and its myths and misconceptions, in order to support survivors and bring an end to this crime.

CCASA’s Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) Planning Committee added the event of Denim Day to our goals for 2012 and sought creative ways to honor this day. Committee members and the current reigning MS. U.S. NORTH AMERICA, Lori Krout, envisioned a Fashion Show that featured survivors modeling denim fashions, and so, the Denim Day Fashion Show was created! With donations from the Arc Thrift Stores and local fashion designers, re-purposed denim fashions will be created, and 10 survivors will be selected to be a part of this show. The Denim Day Fashion Show will take place as part of a larger preview fashion show for Colorado Fashion Week designers. The Denim Day Fashion Show is a benefit for the Colorado Coalition Against Sexual  Assault and will raise awareness about Denim Day as
well as the prevalence of sexual violence in Colorado.

CCASA’s SAAM Planning Committee invites survivors of sexual violence to be models in the Denim Day Fashion Show on Wednesday, April 25th! No previous experience is needed. The Committee is committed to having models of all sizes, races, genders, abilities and age ranges. Please review and complete the “Model Application Form" if you are interested in being considered as a model for the Denim Day Fashion Show. For questions, please contact Alexa Priddy, Outreach Coordinator, at 303-839-9999 or outreach@ccasa.org. APPLICATION DUE: MONDAY, MARCH 12TH BY 5PM

Read more about Denim Day and how you can get involved. Take a stand on Wednesday, April 25th and wear denim to work, to school, in your communities. Choice of clothing does not justify rape. This is one of the greatest myths that still has to be debunked.  Break the silence and help raise awareness!