Golden West Takes Back the Night

On Thursday evening, April 27, “Take Back the Night,” was held at Golden West to culminate Sexual Assault Awareness Week.

The Take Back the Night movement began in 1973, with the purpose of bringing awareness to the high number of sexual assaults that occur every day. It was reported that every 107 seconds another American is sexually assaulted.

While the crowd gathered, they were entertained by singer/songwriter C.J. Lassiter. The ceremony began with a warm welcome by Carla Martinez, Dean of Student Life and Title IX coordinator, followed by a heart-felt message from President Wes Bryan. Dr. Dawn Foor from Community Service Sexual Assault Prevention & Education in Orange County, gave the keynote speech. She stressed the need to make sexual assault prevention a priority in our society.

Guests then participated in a candlelight vigil procession through campus to reflect on victims of assault. Along the way, support stations were set up by various departments and organizations, offering glow sticks, flashlights, whistles, and other gifts.


TBTN’s history spans over half a century. Decades ago in Europe, women from many countries met together as a tribunal council to discuss women’s safety when walking down public streets. In 1973, TBTN goers protested pornography in San Francisco and serial murders of women of color in Los Angeles. In October 1975, a march was held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania after the murder of microbiologist Susan Alexander Speeth, who was stabbed to death while walking home alone. “Take Back the Night” was used as the title of a 1977 memorial read by Anne Pride at an anti-violence rally in Pittsburgh. One of TBTN’s Board members, Laura Lederer, named her book Take Back the Night, published by Harper Perennial on September 1, 1980.Canadians held one of their first marches to protest sexual violence in 1978 in Vancouver, British Columbia. The Vancouver Rape Relief held Take Back The Night® marches from 1980-1985. In 1981, The Canadian Association of Sexual Assault Centers declared the third Friday of September to be the designated date for Take Back The Night® marches nationwide. Since the 1970s in the United States, TBTN has focused on eliminating sexual and domestic violence in all forms. Thousands of colleges, domestic violence shelters, and rape crisis centers have held events all over the country.

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