Three local organizations will spotlight National Sexual Awareness Month with the art installation “What Were You Wearing?”
The installation can be viewed from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Friday at the Hays Arts Center Annex, 1010 Main, and from 9:30 to 5 p.m. April 24 and 25 on the west wall of the main floor of Forsyth Library at Fort Hays State University.
The installation displays a collection of articles of clothing worn by sexual assault victims at the time of the assault and the victim’s story. The exhibit is intended to dispel the belief the survivor could have prevented the assault if they had worn clothing that was less revealing, a press release from the sponsoring organizations said.
“We want students, or anyone, to view the show and to see themselves reflected in the outfits and put the blame where it belongs, which is on the rapist, the person who’s caused the harm, rather than the victim,” said Christie Brungardt of Jana’s Campaign.
Options Domestic and Sexual Violence Services and the FHSU Women’s Leadership Project also are sponsoring the exhibit.
The National Sexual Violence Resource Center reports that one in three women and one in six men in the United States have experienced some form of sexual violence in their lifetimes. On U.S. campuses, 20 to 25 percent of college women and 15 percent of college men are victims of forced sexual contact during their time in college.