For the past 19 years, Peace Over Violence has run its Denim Day campaign in honor of Sexual Violence Awareness Month.
This year’s Denim Day was April 25 as students at South Pasadena High were encouraged to wear denim.
“Wearing jeans on Denim Day has become a symbol of protest against erroneous and destructive attitudes about sexual assault,” said Tiffany Holmes, a senior at South Pasadena High School.
The campaign was originally triggered by a ruling by the Italian Supreme Court 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 following day, the women in the Italian Parliament came to work wearing jeans in solidarity with the victim.
Peace Over Violence developed the Denim Day campaign in response to this case and the activism surrounding it. Since then, wearing jeans on Denim Day has become a symbol of protest against erroneous and destructive attitudes about sexual assault.
In this rape prevention education campaign we ask community members, elected officials, businesses and students to make a social statement with their fashion by wearing jeans on this day as a visible means of protest against the misconceptions that surround sexual assault.