Sokaogon Chippewa Community News
The History of Denim Day
Posted on: April 21, 2022
From the Brighter Days Program
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. The Brighter Days Program will observe Denim Day on April 27th and shares its history:
In 1992, an 18-year-old girl was picked up by her married 45-year-old driving instructor for her very first lesson. He took her to an isolated road, pulled her out of the car, wrestled one of her legs out of her jeans, and forcefully raped her. Threatened with death if she told anyone, he made her drive the car home.
Later that night she told her parents, and they supported her and helped her press charges. The perpetrator was arrested, prosecuted, convicted of rape and sentenced to jail. He appealed the sentence. The case made it all the way to the Italian Supreme Court. Within a matter of days, the case was overturned, dismissed, and the perpetrator released. In a statement by the Chief Judge, he argued, “Because the victim wore very, very tight jeans, she had to help him remove them, and by removing the jeans it was no longer rape but consensual sex.”
Enraged by the verdict, within a matter of hours women in the Italian Parliament launched into immediate action and protested by wearing jeans to work. This call to action motivated and emboldened the California Senate and Assembly to do the same.
People all over the world were outraged. Wearing jeans became an international symbol of protest against erroneous and destructive attitudes and myths surrounding sexual assault.
Stand with us on April 27th and wear your jeans to honor victims of sexual assault and promote discussion of misconceptions that surround sexual violence.
Sexual violence is never the fault of the victim or survivor.
Kerry and Carla at the Brighter Days Program provide services to anyone harmed by domestic violence, sexual assault, teen dating violence or stalking. For assistance, contact Kerry at 715-478-6451 or Carla at 715-478-6452.