What is Dressember?


Lauren Scotti

Photo credit Dressember website.

Nika Aydin, Journalist

Simply Dressember is wearing a dress or tie every day in December to raise awareness for human trafficking.

Further into its depth, the mission of this movement “equips the public to fight for the dignity of all people, leading to the protection and freedom of millions.” They have raised 13 million dollars since the start of their fundraising in 2013. Dressember has been impacting thousands of victims, survivors, and at-risk communities.

Human trafficking involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act.

Seeing as December is when the weather begins to get cooler, cold cities like New York, Chicago, and Montreal have used this to their advantage when spreading awareness. The movement’s timing is crucial because it provides an answer to a question that might be asked. The question being why are you wearing a dress in December? (it is so cold) The possible response would be I am wearing a dress, despite the cold weather, to advocate and bring awareness to human trafficking. The response that the movement said was “it is such a jarring challenge to undertake! Consider this powerful statement from a participant in Ontario: ‘”A dress everyday for 31 days during a Canadian winter is a minor discomfort compared to that of so many affected by slavery and sexual exploitation. I hope, if nothing else, to raise awareness of this dark reality that is still very present in our world, our country, our city.”‘

Junior Ashley Riba, in response to learning about Dressember, said, “I love how creative we have gotten in regards to promoting awareness for issues that weren’t previously discussed. I think this is a really important issue and I am glad that it is getting addressed in a fun and unique.” Another junior, Ella Freedman, responded to this movement and what she thinks about it by saying “I think it is important to raise awareness for human trafficking, but I’m not sure if wearing a dress is an effective way to do so.”

This style challenge “advocates from all over the world pledge to wear a dress or tie for the 31 days of December.” 32,000 men and women have pledged, solely in the last 8 years. Trident and the Dressember movement encourages any and all participants to “join the fight in human trafficking” whether it be donating, speaking about it, or wearing a dress or tie whenever you can during this month.