Denim Day 


Angelina Jia, Journalist

April of 2022 marks the 21st official anniversary of Sexual Harassment Awareness Month. The month focuses on the prevention, recognition, and awareness of sexual harassment, and how to help survivors. The problem is not a small one, and even if it is not talked about often, too many people experience some form of sexual assault in their life. According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, around every 98 seconds, somewhere in America, someone is sexually assaulted, and around 63% of rapes go unreported(RAINN and USDOJ). More often than not, the perpetrator is someone the survivor already knew, which makes it that much harder to report due to fears of not being believed, messing up relationship dynamics, and other reasons.


Denim Day originally started in 1997 when a girl in Italy was raped by an older man while she was wearing jeans. The Italian Supreme Court, which had originally convicted him, overturned his conviction, saying that since she was wearing jeans, she must have helped him take them off and therefore consented. From then on, it became known as the “jeans alibi.” In protest, the Italian Parliament wore jeans to work the next day to raise awareness that sexual assault can happen in any clothing. The movement was noticed internationally and the first Denim Day event in LA was held in 1999 and has been an annual event since. Senior Natalie Moorhead learned about what Denim Day was this year due to a post on someone’s social media that brought her attention to it. She said “I couldn’t wear any denim because I don’t own any,” but she would have if she could. Another student, junior Je Anne Hendrickx, said “Today I wore my denim overalls for Denim Day. I learned about Denim Day through my friends.” She hopes that the problem can be reduced as much as possible and that awareness is raised even outside of Denim Day and the month of April.