Rape myths tell us that people lie about being sexual assaulted.
When people believe in rape myths, they don’t believe survivors.
When people don’t believe survivors, survivors don’t get any support.
When survivors see that they won’t get support, they don’t report their experience.
If survivors don’t report, there’s no way to hold perpetrators responsible.
And if perpetrators can’t be held responsible, violence is normalized.
The Consent Party, a student group at Southern Illinois University – Carbondale, reached out to Breakthrough. The students at SIU felt the university was not supporting survivors of sexual assault. In fact, it seems to be actively trying to hide any cases that came forward! During some over-the-phone coaching, we helped them create a list of demands and plan a protest during their university’s Board of Trustees meeting in December 2015. The students disrupted the meeting, delivered their demands, and made local and statewide news. The day after the meeting and protest, the SIU Board of Trustees vowed to take action and “examine the university’s investigative and support policies surrounding sexual violence.”