Hundreds of students gathered on IUP’s campus Wednesday night to support victims and survivors of sexual and domestic violence.
Take Back the Night (TBTN), an international event to spread awareness and support survivors of sexual assault, as well as domestic violence, started in 1976. Since then, the event has occurred annually in more than 30 countries.
Throughout the week, sidewalks have been decorated in chalk with phrases such as “Yes means yes, no means no,” “You are not alone” and “TBTN 2019.”
IUP’s event started just before dusk in the Putt-Delaney courtyard. Students arrived early for free T-shirts reading, “It’s On,” as well as gathering picket signs if they hadn’t made their own.
Many signs were bearing powerful statements, such as “Yes means yes,” “’No’ does not mean ‘convince me,’” “Stop the violence, stop the silence,” “Whatever we wear, wherever we go, yes means yes, and no means no” and “What they were wearing was not consent,” as well as others.
The event kicked off at 8 p.m. with President Michael Driscoll speaking. One of the night’s chants was started by him.
“1, 2, 3, 4, this is what we’re marching for. 2, 4, 6, 8, no more violence, no more rape.”
Students and faculty marched as they carried signs and chanted as loudly as possible. Another chant rang through the crowd.
“This is our power, this is our right, these are our streets, take back the night.”
At the end of the march, which was through the Oak Grove toward the Hadley Union Building (HUB), students returned borrowed signs and plastic, lit candles in order to convene in the HUB Ohio Room for the “Speak Out,” in which survivors and victims could share their stories in a safe place filled with supporters.
Indiana has resources for those who have endured violence.
The Haven Project, dedicated to ending domestic violence and sexual assault, can be reached at 724-357-3947. It is located in the Suites on Maple East, Suite G-2.
Jennifer McCroskey, sexual violence prevention educator, can also be reached at 724-357-3192, as well as at her e-mail,
The Alice Paul House, whose mission is to promote awareness of domestic violence, sexual assault and victimization in the community, can be reached by 724-349-4444 or 1-800-435-7249. The Alice Paul House’s official website is
Also for IUP students, a new app called “Just in Case” was recently released. The app offers contact information and resources to help students with urgent needs.