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The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

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Sexual assault isn’t a gray matter. April 28 The Signal’s author of the Distress Signal, Melisa Koessel, and California State University, Stanislaus’s Title IX Deputy Director  Julie Johnson will present a sexual consent workshop to bring this issue back into black and white.
The event will take place in South Dining from 5 to 7 p.m. the first Monday after Spring Break, when drinking and use of other substances are very popular.
“When sexual violence is romanticized, excused or condoned by a society, rape culture is born,” Koessel, leader of the workshop, said.
“Attitudes that normalize violence are so built in to our everyday actions they can become difficult to see. The workshop will dissect the social norms that are making our campus a dangerous place.”
The event will include a showing of Nancy Schwartzman’s short documentary “The Line,” which not only defines consensual boundaries, but details Schwartzman’s own autobiographical experience with date rape and resolution. The documentary will be followed by an opportunity for open discussion.
“The goal of the workshop is to just open up a conversation, a starting point, on this campus,” Johnson said.
“There’s been a lack of institutionalization—a lack of, I think, ability to have open discussions about things that may typically be taboo.”
Speakers of local advocacy programs will also be present to discuss the topic and answer any questions about sexual assault, rape and creating less ambiguous lines of consent.
These can be difficult to draw in large part because they are different for each individual.
“For me the lines of ‘boy meets girl’ sexual contact, I mean it’s very fine the lines between what’s okay and what is not,” Adriana Moosekian (extended education student, Spanish) said.
“I definitely would rely on my own intuition and just feeling out a situation before I say that that’s where I would go.”
Considering that the majority of sexually violent acts occur when one or both parties have consumed drugs or alcohol, this is important to bear in mind while enjoying the break.
Refreshments, food and entry will all be free of cost. While RSVPs are not required to attend, they are appreciated and can be made at facebook.com/events/681405248584739.
Silence is assault’s strongest ally, and knowledge its greatest adversary. To learn more about sexual violence and how to help prevent it, go to whereisyourline.org.

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