Sexual assault takes place far more often than we would like to think, fueled by the most recent revelations by the New York Times when it took the media by storm on October 5th, printing an in-depth story on sexual assault allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.
In the past few weeks, the #MeToo movement has brought to light a myriad of victims who have been given the platform and communal support to step forward and declare 'I too have been affected by sexual assault'.
What is the # MeToo Movement?
A social media movement of identity and support. People have taken to social media (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and everything in between), and anyone who has been a victim of sexual assault, who are now standing with others and saying “me too.”
The movement was actually started 10 years ago by activist Tarana Burke to help young women who have been sexually abused, assaulted, or harassed.
It doesn’t discriminate. No matter the gender, race, religion, or anything, sexual assault happens to too many people.
# MeToo Movement has been centered around what is taking place in Hollywood right now, but that’s only one branch of it. We're now seeing it pop up in industries of all sorts and platforms.
What do I need to know? The sheer number of people who have come forward, and reached out to their community is mind-blowing. But remember, this number does not even come close to the reality of how many people in the world are actually affected by sexual violence and assault. We have heard from the brave few who felt comfortable enough to utilize social media, and that is only from the population of the world who has access to such a platform.
Let us keep this in mind, and let us remember that we are all bystanders to a community of fellow human beings. Let us take this surge of awareness, and use it to help others and add to the greater good.
# MeToo Movement: Awareness through empathy
The level of awareness that has been created by a community of people recognizing each other for a subject that only they could empathize with. As a victim of sexual assault, harassment, or violence, talking about it is the first step to being able to cope with the situation. Coping with a traumatic experience, as sexual assault truly is, is extremely hard to begin. Some of the leading ways to start are to increase your awareness of the situation, reach out to others, and take advantage of outside resources. All of these tools can to help you to start moving forward in your life. Empowerment is key.
Females are not the only ones affected by the
# MeToo Movement
Since the launch of this eye-opening campaign, we have seen and heard women from all over the world speaking up, and joining in. But we mustn't forget that men are also victims of sexual assault. Statistically, they are much less likely to ever speak out about it due to stigma. It would be irresponsible of us to overlook half of the population by saying that only one gender has dealt with an all encompassing issue like sexual assault.
If you or a loved one have been affected by sexual assault, violence, or harassment, or are looking to learn more about sexual assault prevention, please contact us today. Continue creating awareness, continue involving others, and keep the kindness and empathy coming. No Zebra's works to encourage that and prevent future statistics.