According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC), this “April 2021 marks the official 20th anniversary of Sexual Assault Awareness Month.” However, twenty years does not fully encompass the scope of the work and the number of years in which activists have been engaged in the movement to end sexual violence.
The NSVRC observes that with the growth of the civil rights movement in the 1940s and 1950s, it became very evident that any advocacy around sexual violence prevention had to address the intersectional nature of violence against women. Even though intersectionality wasn't officially coined by Professor Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw until 1989, work by Black feminists was well underway before then (NSVRC, "History of Sexual Assault Awareness Month").
The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR) and NSVRC note that racial justice is central to any movement that seeks to address and end sexual violence; this work cannot occur without acknowledging the historical and systemic power imbalances that have enabled the continuous oppression and violence against women (NSVRC, "History"). Statistics show that Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) disproportionately experience violence (Barlow, 2020; NSVRC, "Our Committment to Racial Justice") making it all the more imperative to take an inclusive and intersectional approach to designing services and prevention strategies.
MiraCosta students are especially encouraged to seek free and confidential assistance through Student Health Services, which provides personal and mental health counseling sessions. Sessions are held one time per week for 50 minutes, up to six consecutive weeks, and there are also one-time drop-in crisis sessions available.
Silhouette Photo of Person Standing in Front of Window - Used under (CC BY-NC 2.0); image resized from original