Denim Day of Action

Wednesday, 27 April 2011
New York, NY

On a sunny morning in April, dozens of advocates from the movement to end violence—all wearing denim—gathered on the steps of City Hall in to commemorate Denim Day of Action in New York City, a day recognized across the country as one to raise awareness, support survivors and debunk myths and misconceptions surrounding sexual violence.

Denim Day Add

Joyful Heart Foundation staff members were proud to stand with advocates from the community including New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Makowitz, Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer and Council Member Julissa Ferreas at a press conference. Elected officials and representatives from community-based organizations called for effective community programming and education to prevent and end sexual assault and relationship violence, and both borough presidents and City Council presented proclamations officially declaring April 27, 2011 as Denim Day. We were joined by members of the media, who covered the event for local news outlets.


 The press conference kicked off activities happening across New York City organized by Start Strong Bronx and the New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault in partnership with the Center Against Domestic Violence, Children’s Aid Society, Day One, Hollaback, the Joyful Heart Foundation, Leave Out The Violence-US, Men Can Stop Rape, Safe Horizon, SAFER (Students Active For Ending Rape), Sanctuary for Families, STEPS To End Family Violence, the Joe Torre Safe at Home Foundation and the Violence Intervention Program. Activities included a youth poetry slam in Brooklyn, a play exploring how men can stand up to prevent assault and engage in positive relationships in the Bronx, a discussion exploring best practices for university sexual assault prevention in Manhattan and an interactive workshop for youth-serving professionals in Queens.

Denim Day of Action was originally created by Joyful Heart’s Los Angeles-based program partner, Peace Over Violence. It was sparked by the story of a young girl who was raped by her driving instructor in Italy while wearing tight jeans. In 1999, the Italian Supreme Court reasoned the victim’s tight jeans meant that she must have consented. Since then, Denim Day has become a movement across the country.

Read more about Denim Day of Action on the Joyful Heart Blog and learn how you can organize your own Denim Day event at

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