USI students host ‘Take Back the Night’ event to spread sexual assault awareness

USI students host ‘Take Back the Night’ event to spread sexual assault awareness
Published: Apr. 19, 2023 at 11:08 PM CDT
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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - On Wednesday, Students for Gender Violence Awareness at the University of Southern Indiana partnered with the Albion Center to organize an event to “Take Back the Night” and speak out against sexual assault.

Brandi Beckham with the Albion Center said the goal was to create a safe place for students.

“We’re here to raise awareness and also just provide comfort and a sense of community to survivors and secondary survivors alike,” she said.

The group’s president, Katie Vinci, said this is the second year they have held the event to mark Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

“As we’re continuing to push this message out, we want people in the community and students to know that they have the power to make a difference,” she said. “Standing up against victim blaming, speaking out on social media and supporting a survivor is really important this month.”

Among the group of marchers was Ethan Atkins, who runs a men’s mental health club on campus.

“We have a couple men [in the group] who have been sexually assaulted,” he said.

He said it’s important for those men and any victim of sexual assault to see that people care.

“It makes them feel more comfortable knowing that other men have experienced it or are at least standing out being a voice so they don’t feel so trapped,” he said.

Vinci said with such a difficult subject, just knowing that you’re not alone can go a long way.

“It can be super empowering to see something like that and to know that there are people in the community and at this university that are fighting for you,” she said.

The Albion Center’s sexual assault crisis line can be reached at 812-424-7273.