The Clothesline Project, presented by the Students Teaching and Empowering Peers (S.T.E.P.), honors survivors and victims of interpersonal violence (i.e. dating violence, harassment, sexual assault, and stalking). Anyone who has experienced such violence, at any time in their life, is encouraged to create a shirt and allies are encouraged to make shirts to support their friends and others who have experienced violence. One student, Steven Rivas, who made a shirt, says that “clothesline projects like this one remind people of the real meaning of violence statistics that are often ignored.”
It is the very simple process of making a shirt that gives victims an avenue through which to tell an often horrific and unspeakable experience that has dramatically altered the course of their life. Participating in this project provides a powerful step towards helping a survivor break through the silence that has surrounded their experience. S.T.E.P wants survivors and those close to them to have the opportunity to share their voices and also raise awareness to everyone on campus. This will raise greater awareness about a very important issue. S.T.E.P hopes that through this project, hey will be able to provide student groups, faculty, staff and students a blank t-shirt with which they can create a collage to convey their message about interpersonal violence. S.T.E.P can also provide peer educator-facilitated discussions on campus to raise awareness about consent, healthy relationships, unhealthy relationships, dating violence, sexual assault, stalking, gender equality, masculinity and femininity, etc. STEP Educators are also willing to assist with designing or developing ideas for a t-shirt if desired. According to their website, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to request an informational session.
Their goal is to have a campus-wide display of activism and awareness. Spread the word. Let people know that this is happening. The t-shirts are on display around campus from Oct. 10-21. Look for your t-shirt around campus! For those who have experienced violence or even those who know someone who has, take time and look at the shirts posted around campus because the stories are real and raw in the minds and eyes of those who wrote them. This is a significant issue that needs to be fixed. Only we can prevent more sexual assaults. The clothesline project is a step in the right direction towards a solution but the students need to get involved. But we can do more to prevent sexual assault.