WAVAW in partnership with The Vancouver Police Department, BarWatch, Battered Women’s Support Services (BWSS), BC Women’s Hospital Sexual Assault Service, NEWAD Inc. and ZOOM Media are launching the 2013 “Don’t Be That Guy” Campaign. The posters will be in clubs and bars in the entertainment districts around the city for the months of July and August.
Through our work at Women Against Violence Against Women / Rape Crisis Centre, we know that women expect police to be accountable for our safety so it’s critical for the criminal justice system to recognize that men’s sexual violence is not women’s fault. It continues to happen because of the devaluing of women, the encouragement of male violence, and victim blaming that is endemic in a rape culture.
For decades, WAVAW has been advocating for police to use their resources toward preventing violence against women. With the Vancouver launch of this prevention campaign, we are continuing the work of other grassroots feminist organizations from Edmonton and Ottawa.
While the courts, the police, the media, bars and clubs, and our society as a whole are responsible for changing the way we think about the crime of sexual assault, individual men can resist rape culture, respect women, and understand that they are not entitled to women’s bodies. According to Canadian consent laws, a woman who is extremely drunk or unconscious cannot legally consent to sex.
Typically sexual assault awareness campaigns target potential victims telling women how to dress, where to go, and how much to drink. Women Against Violence Against Women / Rape Crisis Centre does not support messages that hold women responsible for stopping violence against us. We do support the message of the Don’t Be That Guy Campaign that holds potential offenders responsible for ending men’s violence against women.
This is the second summer that this campaign will be launched in Vancouver.
2013 News Coverage of the Don’t Be That Guy Campaign