Take Back the Night brings together students to fight sexual violence

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http://oaklandscottishrite.org/?search=get-viagra Staff writer

see University of West Florida students filled the Commons Auditorium Wednesday night for Take Back the Night, an event to raise awareness for sexual assault prevention. The gathering showcased a variety recent media and news events highlighting sexual violence awareness.

see url An assortment of speakers included students performing their own written poetry based on their own personal experiences with the topic. A sexual assault survivor, Haley Morrissette, recited her powerful poem calling for bravery and strength following an assault.

go site “Hear me and see me as a survivor, not a victim,” Morrissette said.  

Prevention was a focal point of the event, calling for students to act up and make a difference in the community. Student-created videos highlighted what to do in situations involving alcohol impairment and assault. UWF President Martha Saunders gave her thoughts on what students can do to prevent the issue.

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“We can install lights and devices and other technology, but ultimately it comes down you, the students, to prevent these assault from happening,” Saunders said. “It brings me great joy to see how many of you came out tonight.”

Attendees were given glow sticks asked to hold them up in the dark auditorium as an act of unity and solidarity. A slideshow of UWF students taking a pledge to fight sexual violence played among the monitors in the room.  

A march following the hour-long discussion concluded at the Susan Morris memorial bench and featured a moment of silence and two hymns dedicated to her memory sung by members of Alpha Gamma Delta and Sigma Alpha Mu. This year’s Take Back the Night coincides with the 25th anniversary of Morris’ murder.

The march concluded at Cannon Green, with volunteers passing out T-shirts to commemorate the event. Candles were lit in a vigil along the grassy area, honoring victims and survivors of sexual assault.