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It Stops Now – NWCI mural on ending sexual violence and harassment installed in University College C

Published: Monday, January 28, 2019

Students in University College Cork will today unveil a mural calling for an end to sexual violence and harassment in third level institutions. The mural is a part of ItStops Now, a campaign by the National Women’s Council of Ireland (NWCI), and is being installed as part of the college’s inaugural Bystander Intervention Week.

The It Stops Now mural will be unveiled today, Monday January 28, outside Boole Basement at 12pm.

Tara Brown, It Stops Now Campaign Coordinator said,

 “It Stops Now is proud to be part of UCC Bystander Week, which is a crucial opportunity to empower students and staff to recognise and tackle sexual violence and harassment in a meaningful way. The It Stops Now mural will be installed by students, and is an engaging installation which dispels popular myths and engrained attitudes towards sexual violence and harassment, and calls on people to believe survivors, become active bystanders, and always check consent.”

“It Stops Now project aims to tackle the harmful behaviours which prevent students from being able to safely and equally participate in college life by driving  change through awareness, training and support structures. The events taking place this week play an important role in this, reminding us all of our shared responsibilities in creating a culture of zero tolerance to sexual violence and harassment, both on and off campus.”

Tara Brown continued,

“One in three women in Europe will experience physical or sexual violence in their lifetime. Sexual assault doesn’t exist in a vacuum: catcalling, sexist jokes and ‘slut shaming’ lay the foundations of a sexual violence culture. The It Stops Now campaign and mural calls on each of us to play and active role in challenging toxic behaviours, ending victim-blaming attitudes, and believing survivors. It is fantastic to see the engagement of students here in UCC on this campaign. Empowering students to lead change is essential, because the values they take from their college experience will shape a better, more equal society for everyone.”

Dr Louise Crowley, who leads the Bystander Intervention Programme said,

"The future for proactive student engagement and education is this field is promising, inspired by the vision of the Minister in demanding change and bringing together experts in the field to develop key strategies and expectations across the sector. There is in my mind a very real collective endeavour for cross institutional change – a recognition of the capacity for positive and affirmative change. In tackling this destructive social behaviour through positive education and student empowerment and university management support, we can and will effect a vital cultural change."

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For more information, please contact Sarah Clarkin, Communications Officer, 0858619087, or Orlaith Grehan, It Stops Now Project Officer, 085 8589103