City of Palmdale employees wore denim on April 25 in support of the 19th Denim Day, a cause to raise awareness about sexual assault and to show support for survivors.  The campaign presented by Peace Over Violence, a non-profit agency designed to educate the public about rape and sexual assault.

“The City of Palmdale is proud to support causes like this that have positive impact on people’s lives,” said Patricia Nevarez, Palmdale human resources manager. “We support and participate in events to help raise awareness about important issues.”

For the past 18 years, Peace Over Violence has run its Denim Day campaign on a Wednesday in April in honor of Sexual Violence Awareness Month. The campaign was originally triggered by a ruling by the Italian Supreme Court where a rape conviction was overturned because the justices felt that since the victim was wearing tight jeans she must have helped her rapist remove her jeans, thereby implying consent. The following day, the women in the Italian Parliament came to work wearing jeans in solidarity with the victim.

Peace Over Violence developed the Denim Day campaign in response to this case and the activism surrounding it. Since then, wearing jeans on Denim Day has become a symbol of protest against erroneous and destructive attitudes about sexual assault. In this rape prevention education campaign we ask community members, elected officials, businesses and students to make a social statement with their fashion by wearing jeans on this day as a visible means of protest against the misconceptions that surround sexual assault.

Peace Over Violence, (formerly LACAAW), established in 1971 by pioneering feminist activists, is a sexual and domestic violence, stalking, child abuse and youth violence prevention center headquartered in Los Angeles and dedicated to building healthy relationships, families and communities free from sexual, domestic and interpersonal violence.

One of the first agencies of its kind in the country, POV has been committed to social service, social change and social justice for 41 years. POV’s innovative programs are comprehensive and include Emergency, Intervention, Prevention, Education and Advocacy services.

For more information, contact Peace Over Violence at (310) 392-8381 or visit www.peaceoverviolence.org.