Denim Day pushes awareness of sexual assault


Noelle Erslovas

The impact of Denim Day has spread across the world to show support for sexual assault awareness.

Denim Day sparked the attention of many students at Carlmont, who dressed up in outfits from jeans to denim coats on April 27. However, some students were unaware of the true meaning behind Denim Day and the history behind it.

The Denim Day info website is one of many sources providing information and support for Denim Day. It includes many ways to get involved and learn more about the topic.

Jennifer Luo, a freshman at Carlmont, explains why she decided to dress up for Denim Day to show her support for its message.

Students dress up for Denim Day. “I wore denim to support bringing awareness to sexual assault. I think it was a great way to get students involved in real-world issues,” said sophomore Samantha Niles. (Noelle Erslovas)

“I dressed up for Denim Day to combat the idea that sexual assault is the survivors’ faults. I can show how it is important for others to become aware and care about this topic while expressing my support for the subject,” Luo said.

As for the history of Denim Day, the campaign began after a ruling by the Italian Supreme Court overturned a rape conviction because the justices believed that since the victim was wearing tight jeans, she must have helped remove her own jeans, thereby implying consent. The following day, the women in the Italian Parliament came to work wearing jeans in solidarity with the victim.

History of Denim Day by Noelle Erslovas

Simonetta Sotjiu, one of the 10 female judges on the Supreme Court, shared her thoughts about understanding Italian infuriation over the incident in Italy. She spoke on the topic to the La Repubblica newspaper in a New York Times article.

“The law is solidly in the hands of men. Many of them think in a way that is completely detached from reality,” said Sotjiu.

Since then, what started as a local campaign to bring awareness to victim-blaming and harmful myths surrounding sexual violence has grown into a movement. Denim Day has been the longest-running sexual violence prevention and education campaign. 

The importance of this event influenced many of the students at Carlmont, who shared their thoughts and support. Rohan Haldankar, a sophomore at Carlmont, shares his views on the event.

“Denim Day is important because it spreads awareness for sexual assault and encourages those affected to tell their stories,” Haldankar said. “It should be recognized as a major problem around the world.”

Pailey Deborde, a sophomore, also believes that the influence of Denim Day helps break down the double standard that may arise when talking about important issues like sexual assault.

“Having Denim Day at school helps normalize talking about the issues of sexual assault and can help victims feel more comfortable to share their stories,” Deborde said.

Whether it be dressing up to show support for Denim Day or visiting the Students Offering Support (SOS) room for aid, students have shown multitudes of ways that they want to support critical world issues inside and outside of school.

“I want those who are victims to know that they are not alone and that no matter what they wear, no matter how revealing or conservative, it is never the victim’s fault,” said freshman Kiana Choi.