ROCKINGHAM — Those who wish to “Embrace Your Voice” during National Sexual Assault Awareness Month are invited to join a march and rally in downtown Rockingham on April 28.
Marchers will meet at the old County Courthouse at 10:30 a.m. and walk to Cole Plaza, across from City Hall, where they may attend a short presentation by the county’s Sexual Assault Response Team.
“Sexual violence affects every member of this community,” SART chair Linda Tillman said Monday, “and it will take everyone in this community, working together, to end sexual violence.
“This community — and every person in it — is far too valuable to tolerate sexual violence in any form,” she said, adding that such violence also affected a victims’ family and friends.
To commemorate the month, SART has set up several activities and events:
• All month: Twitter and Facebook campaigns, and awareness bulletin boards on the campus of Richmond Community College.
• April 25: Denim Day, during which all employers are asked to allow employees to wear denim.
• April 28: march and rally. Richmond County SART encourages teams to rally and march together. The first 100 participants to register will receive free T-shirts.
Those wanting to register to march and those who need more information on commemoration events or SART in general may email Tillman at [email protected]
Community and other organizations across the country plan events during April to highlight sexual violence as a public-health, human-rights and social-justice issue.
In the early 1970s, women marched in “Take Back the Night” rallies to protest rape and sexual assault that sometimes occur when women walk unaccompanied at night. Other activities followed.
In 2009, President Barack Obama proclaimed April as Sexual Assault Awareness Month. President Donald Trump called attention to the commemoration Sunday, during Easter celebrations at the White House.