Social distancing due to the COVID-19 pandemic will not stop an annual MTSU tradition designed to raise awareness of sexual assault, gender identity and other issues.
“Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” is going virtual through Friday, April 17. The event, which is being renamed “Walk a Mile in Their Shoes,” usually engages men in a mile-long on-campus walk in women’s high-heeled shoes to commemorate Sexual Assault Awareness Month in a fun way.
Organizers said the name change will shed light on the fact that gender-based violence does not impact women exclusively.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 1 in 4 women and 1 in 9 men experience severe intimate partner physical violence, intimate partner contact sexual violence and/or intimate partner stalking with impacts such as injury, fearfulness, post-traumatic stress disorder, use of victim services, contraction of sexually transmitted diseases, etc.
These statistics increase when looking specifically at women and men in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) communities, as well as nonbinary individuals.
Participants are asked take a video or photo of themselves while walking and use the hashtag #WalkaMileMT. When posting images, participants are also asked to include a fact about relationship violence from www.ncadv.org/statistics and/or www.hrc.org/resources/sexual-assault-and-the-lgbt-community. Be sure to tag @mtsu, @ifcmtsu and @mtsu.jac in the posts.
The MTSU Interfraternity Council has hosted the event each year during Greek Week since 2017. This year’s virtual walk is hosted in collaboration with the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and the June Anderson Center for Women and Nontraditional Students.
For more information, contact Maigan Wipfli, director of the June Anderson Center, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
— Gina Logue (email@example.com)