ACTION ALERT! Participate in the #IHaveTheRightTo campaign and support Chessy Prout!
PAVE stands with courageous teen sexual assault survivor Chessy Prout! Last week, Owen Labrie was back in court seeking a new trial. Labrie, a former prep school student at St. Paul’s School, was convicted in 2015 of sexually assaulting his classmate as part of the “Senior Salute” where senior men competed with friends to see who could “slay” the greatest number of younger girls.
The media surrounding the trial has been filled with language that seems to place blame on the survivor, not the perpetrator. Language is powerful! #ChessyProut is a survivor, not an accuser. Journalists, don’t blame survivors for sexual assault. They deserve support not scrutiny.
PAVE Ambassador Delaney Henderson pictured above said, “Chessy is my hero. Sexual assault is the most under-reported crime in the country and when reporters use victim-blaming language, it keeps other survivors silent.”
PAVE Ambassador Julia Dixon said, “It’s always disheartening when journalists don’t take the time to review the language they use around sexual violence and it’s survivors and consider the messaging of such language. Calling Chessy an ‘accuser’, for instance, puts the action on her, as if her actions are what began this process, and they’re not. But language like that shifts the focus, and in some ways the blame. Chessy wouldn’t have anything to accuse if she hadn’t been targeted to be a victim of rape first. Words are important and this kind of subliminal undermining only worsens victim blaming culture and tells survivors to stay silent. I think some media outlets are acting as if Labrie is going to get a new trial, but that hasn’t happened. Nothing is alleged anymore; he was found guilty. And unless a new trial DOES happen, he is a sex offender in the eyes of the law.”
Chessy Prout revealed her identity in August 2016 and launched #IHaveTheRightTo campaign with PAVE on the Today Show garnering over 4 million impressions on social media.
“I want everyone to know that I am not afraid or ashamed anymore, and I never should have been,” Chessy, now 18, told Today‘s Savannah Guthrie.“It’s been two years now since the whole ordeal, and I feel ready to stand up and own what happened to me and make sure other people, other girls and boys, don’t need to be ashamed either,” she added.
PAVE Founder Angela Rose said, “Chessy Prout is an inspirational role model who decided that role of victim does not suit her. She is a survivor and thriver who has taken her pain and transformed it into a positive force for change in the world. Many survivors carry a heavy weight of shame, but Chessy’s message has helped countless survivors feel empowered. The Prout family has moved the needle forward on the way this country talks about sexual assault and we are proud to support their journey.”
Please support Chessy and participate today!
1. Take a picture and/or a short video with #IHaveTheRightTo _________
2. Post to social media with the hashtag #IHaveTheRightTo
3. Invite your friends to participate
4. Sign up for updates CLICK HERE
5. Tweet/FB in support of this, here are some samples:
From news coverage to court rooms, victim-blaming is never okay. Support #ChessyProut & visit IHaveTheRightTo.org #IHaveTheRightTo
Stand with @Chessy_Prout as #OwenLabrie appeals his sexual assault conviction. Perpetrators should be held accountable #IHaveTheRightTo
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