During October, domestic violence and sexual assault awareness month, the President’s Commission on the Status of Women will work with the NO MORE Project to raise awareness regarding these issues.
According to the NO MORE Project website, the campaign was launched in 2013 by a coalition of advocacy groups, service providers, the U.S. Department of Justice, universities, major corporations and many other individuals and organizations. The NO MORE Project aims to raise public awareness and engagement around ending domestic violence and sexual assault.
The O in NO is a zero, meaning zero tolerance for domestic violence and sexual abuse. The NO MORE symbol is the first unifying symbol used to express universal support for ending domestic violence and sexual assault in our society.
COSW will place red cutouts of families across WSU’s campus, symbolizing a family from Michigan, whose lives were lost due to domestic violence. Each figure will have a gold shield on their chest with their first name, age and a brief story about what happened to them.
Sara Byczek, chair of COSW and staff member at CAPS said, “They are the silent witnesses to the domestic violence that has happened and we use real stories from Michigan--in hopes to helping people understand that domestic violence does happen.”
Seventeen cutouts will go up on October 3 and will be placed in the Student Center, Faculty Administration building and Medical campus.
“Teal is the sexual assault awareness color, they picked it because they wanted to make a symbol to be able to represent that they are saying ‘No More’ to all these areas of abuse,” Byczek said.
Brandy Banks is a commissioner of COSW, a WSU alum and currently associate director of the Dean of Students Office and the Student Conduct Office. She has been involved with COSW for over a year.
Along with Byczek, Banks helped put together a NO MORE campaign event in January of 2016, where a “Teal Out” occurred at a Warrior basketball game and students pledged NO MORE to domestic violence and sexual assault.
“If a friend, worker or classmate happens to confide in you and has the courage to move forward and say that they are being sexually assaulted or are in an abusive relationship, listen to them lead them,” Banks said. “A lot of the times we don’t have all the answers, but we can get them in touch with someone who can help them.”
Rachel Kollin, recently joined the commission when she started working at WSU in July. She is currently the DOSO liaison for the COSW.
“I think speaking up is the most important, if you see something that seems wrong or doesn’t look right or don’t agree with say something,” Kollin said.
On Oct. 5, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. COSW and DOSO will be hosting the NO MORE Project photo booth and silent witness campaign in Gullen Mall. Students are encouraged to take a photo with the NO MORE sign and make that pledge NO MORE to domestic violence and sexual assault.