Clothesline Project calls attention to domestic abuse

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Allie O’Connor

The Women’s Advocacy Club hosted this year’s Clothesline Project at the Florida Southern Bandshell last Friday evening. The club holds this event to show support for victims and survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence.

The president of the club, junior Driyannah Lynch, conducted the event from introducing advocates from the Peace River Center to leading the shirt decorating activity. Each audience member was given a blank shirt to decorate with statistics or quotes to explain that these problems do happen and that victims are not alone.

“We put on this event every year to show college kids that not everything is okay,” Lynch said. “There are abusive signs that we love to ignore within our society today so we hope this event brings that awareness to Florida Southern.”

The Peace River Center spoke about the options they have for victims and how they can help through the process of after an attack. They also had multiple pamphlets out for people to take explaining their options and where to find help if needed.

“We want to invite anyone who feels like they have been sexually assaulted to our offices on South Crystal Lake Drive,” the advocate said. “We have wonderful services for any sexual violence victims or domestic violence.”

The event continued with a skit from the women of Alpha Chi Omega showing how people may respond to questions about their significant other if they are in an abusive relationship. It also showed how to respond with help and how to be open talking about these issues, even if the victims are not. 

“Symptoms of a domestically violent relationship could include a partner who looks at you or acts in ways to scare you, controls who you see, what you do, or where you go,” Alpha Chi Omega sister Emma Edgar said.

As the event continued, the voices of FloSoCo sang uplifting songs and pieces of music that pertain to survivors to show that they are not alone. This continued for the rest of the event while the audience decorated their shirts and took photos in front of the shirts already on the clothesline.

The event itself was moving for many audience members and continued to leave an impact after people left the Bandshell. The shirts made on Friday were dried and hung on the clothesline for this past week to show survivors and others that sexual assault happens and that it is not the victim’s fault.

The Clothesline Project will continue in the coming years at Florida Southern, as it has had an impact on the students and the society of the college. It continues to spread its message across not just Florida Southern but also the country in the hopes of increasing awareness for signs of domestic abuse.

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