White Ribbon Campaign begins March 28
White Ribbon Campaign begins March 28March 25, 2008Matthew R. Snydermrsnyder@syr.edu
This year, Syracuse University will again play a leading role in the Central New York community in participating in Vera House’s White Ribbon Campaign. The campaign, a community-wide initiative to raise awareness of domestic and sexual violence, runs for 10 days, from March 28-April 6. SU has again set a goal of being the area’s leading provider of white ribbons, wristbands and lapel pins, visual representations of the wearer’s commitment to supporting a culture that does not tolerate gender-based violence.
A kickoff event for the White Ribbon Campaign, coordinated by Vera House, will be held on Friday, March 28, at noon in Clinton Square. Members of the community are invited to meet there. Those gathered will walk en masse to Armory Square, tying white ribbons around trees and street lamps along the way.
During the campaign, white ribbons ($1), wrist bands ($1) and lapel pins ($5) will be available to all members of the University and Central New York communities through the Office of the Senior Vice President for Student Affairs, Room 518 of Crouse-Hinds Hall, during business hours on weekdays during the campaign. Ribbons will also be available for sale at the Schine Box Office from March 28 – April 5 during regular business hours. Orders for large quantities or advance purchase may be made by contacting Jennifer L. Uryniak, associate director/financial analyst, at (315) 443-4357 or firstname.lastname@example.org; University departments that wish to pay for their orders with I.D.s should contact Uryniak for instructions.
Other opportunities to buy ribbons, wristbands and pins on campus include:
- From students representing the Golden Key International Honour Society in the atrium of the Hildegarde and J. Myer Schine Student Center from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Friday, March 28, and from student volunteers representing different student organizations from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday-Friday, March 31-April 4, in the Schine atrium.
- From students representing the South Campus Organization for Programming Excellence (S.C.O.R.E.) in the atrium of the Goldstein Student Center from 5-9 p.m. Monday-Friday, March 31-April 3.
- From student-athlete volunteers selling ribbons and wristbands in the Carrier Dome before SU lacrosse games on March 29 and April 5.
The Rev. Thomas V. Wolfe, dean of Hendricks Chapel, is serving as the campaign’s community chair. “The White Ribbon Campaign is committed to ending the silence that so often hides abusive behavior toward women,” Wolfe says. “Men are challenged to speak out to other men when they hear jokes that diminish women and to not accept controlling behaviors that in any way reflect an abuse of power. This campaign is all about modeling healthy and just behavior, and creating a culture of safety.”
Barry L. Wells, senior vice president and dean of student affairs and a member of the Vera House Foundation board of directors, chairs SU’s participation in Vera House’s local effort. “Syracuse University’s on-campus and community leadership of the White Ribbon Campaign serves as a showcase to our unwavering, core commitments to survivors’ rights and working against sexual violence,” he says. “It is a very important opportunity for us to recognize and further the work of the University’s Sexual Assault Support Services, Department of Public Safety, Office of Judicial Affairs and the staff, faculty and student leaders in all areas of the institution whose collaborations do so much to help survivors and prevent future acts of violence.”
The keynote of SU’s participation in the White Ribbon Campaign will be “Responding to Domestic and Sexual Violence — The University and the City: Two Communities as One,” a free, public panel discussion on Wednesday, April 2, from 7-8:30 p.m. in Stolkin Auditorium of SU’s Physics Building. Representatives from the Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office, the Syracuse Police Department’s Abused Persons Unit and Vera House will come together with staff and students from the Department of Public Safety, the Office of Prevention Services, the Interfraternity Council and the Panhellenic Association for discussion on how each can collaborate. The event is organized by Rami S. Badawy, director of the Office of Judicial Affairs, a White Ribbon Campaign committee member and recipient of the 2007 Sister Mary Vera Recognition Award, and Juanita Perez Williams, associate dean of students in the Office of Student Life.
The White Ribbon Campaign leads the University community into the month of April, which has widely become recognized as Sexual Assault Awareness Month. A variety of University-wide initiatives will build on the awareness created by the White Ribbon Campaign.
For Take Back the Night 2008, campus and community members will come together to take a stand against sexual, relationship and other forms of interpersonal violence; raise awareness about attitudes that perpetuate violence; and discuss ways to work together to create a safe environment for all members of the community. Take Back the Night events, coordinated by Sexual Assault Support Services, will include a panel discussion (April 9) and Hands Against Violence activity (April 14-15), and will culminate in the Clothesline Project and Take Back the Night rally, march and speak-out on April 16. More information on individual events will be announced in the coming weeks.
Vera House works to end all domestic and sexual violence; to assist families in crisis; to support those affected by domestic and sexual violence to live safe, self-sufficient lives; to empower women and children; and to promote a culture of equality and respect in relationships. Located in Syracuse for more than 30 years, Vera House offers numerous programs and services, including 24-hour crisis hotlines. It introduced the White Ribbon Campaign to Central New York 14 years ago and will host several events in the community during this year’s campaign. For more information, visit http://verahouse.org.
For more information on the White Ribbon Campaign at SU, contact the Office of the Senior Vice President for Student Affairs at 443-4263.