What is Denim Day?
In 1992, an 18-year old girl was raped by her driving instructor in Italy. He was convicted of rape and sentenced to jail - until the Italian Supreme Court got his appeal, and overturned his sentence: "Because the victim wore very, very tight jeans," the Court notes in their decision, "she had to help him remove them, and by removing the jeans it was no longer rape but consensual sex." The women in Italy's Parliament wore jeans to work as a protest.
Since 1999, Peace Over Violence has organized Denim Day in LA & USA each April during sexual assault awareness month, to make a statement of protest against the misconceptions that surround sexual assault.
Why This Matters in 2013
Though I want to believe we have come a long way in our understanding and treatment of victims since 1992, sadly, the news belies this. We only have to look to the Steubenville case, and the deaths of Audrie Pott and Rehtaeh Parsons to see that we still have a long way to go.
There is no excuse and never an invitation to rape.
If you have been the victim of sexual assault and need help, or you want to help a loved one, you can contact RAINN or call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE.
If you suspect that a child is being abused, or if you are a child or teen who is being abused, you can contact Child Help or call the National Child Abuse Hotline 1-800-4-A-CHILD.