If your boss insists on "Casual Fridays" ask them to make an exception for this one very special Wednesday.

Through my involvement with the SueB 5K and 10K, I've gotten to get to know the amazing group of ladies who make miracles happen everyday through the Women and Children's Alliance.  This Wednesday, April 24 they're honoring the survivors of sexual assault and starting a conversation about the danger of victim shaming through a special day called Denim Day.

The first time their Communications Manager, Christine Davis, told me the story behind Denim Day I was absolutely sick to my stomach.  The story stems from a horrific sexual assault story in Italy where a female driving student was sexually assaulted by her 45-year-old male instructor during a lesson.  The ordeal allegedly went on for over an hour and he told the young woman that if she spoke up, he would kill her.  She mustered up the courage to tell her parents and the family pressed charges. The driving instructor was convicted and jailed.  That's where story should end.

Unfortunately, it's not.  The Italian Supreme Court later overturned the case.  Their reasoning? The female victim was wearing tight denim jeans during the assault and the justices felt that there was no way that the instructor could have removed them himself.  In their decision they explained that the young woman had to have helped take them off, therefore making the act consensual.

It shouldn't surprise you that this angered Italian women who heard about the case.  The next day, every woman serving in the Italian Parliament showed up to work in jeans and carried posters reading "Jeans: An Alibi for Rape."

News of the case reached the United States and staged similar protests.  The very next year, a victim's rights group created the tradition of wearing denim to stand up for victims and to get the conversation about how dangerous it is to shame victims who have been something through something horrific. That tradition is known as Denim Day, it happens every April.

If you want to be part of an incredibly powerful movement simply wear jeans to work tomorrow and start the conversation with your co-workers.  If you work in an office that won't allow jeans at all, find a creative way to work a denim ribbon or bracelet into your outfit.  The WCA even has posters you can print off to hang in your cubicle around your office so that you can share the importance of Denim Day.

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