DENVER (KDVR) — The month of April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, dedicated to bringing awareness to the perils of sexual assault as well as resources and support for victims.
The first Wednesday of this month has been designated as “Start by Believing Day” to teach people to believe the victims of sexual assault.
Throughout April, several organizations including the Denver Police Department and Denver Health are collaborating to highlight the importance of believing survivors of sexual assault.
These organizations are encouraging residents to take a pledge to “Start by Believing” victims of sexual assault. Participants can do so by visiting denvergov.org/startbybelieving and using #Denver in the form when taking the pledge. Anyone can participate in this pledge and it’s open from April 5-11.
Participants are also encouraged to learn how best to respond when a loved one tells them they were sexually assaulted. If survivors are met with belief, they might be more likely to pursue help from a victims’ advocacy center or report it to law enforcement.
Empower Field and the Denver City and County building will be lit up April 7-13 and Ball Arena on April 7 as part of the “Shine the Light” event highlighting the importance of this movement.
Interested parties can participate virtually by following @DenverPolice, @DenverDAsOffice, @theBlueBenchDen on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. DPD has created a “Start by Believing” Facebook frame for participants to add to their profile pictures as well.
Additional information and resources can be found at:
- The Blue Bench – Sexual Assault Hotline – 303-322-7273
- Denver Health Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners – 303-602-3007
- Denver Police Victim Assistance Unit – 720-913-6035