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May 27, 2019 | by  | in News |
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Thursdays in Black Continuing Kaupapa with Club Launch

A student-led Thursdays in Black Club has launched at Victoria University. Previously run through VUWSA, the campaign will now operate independently as a club.

Thursdays in Black is a nationwide campaign to end sexual violence on tertiary campuses and in university communities.

 

The movement seeks to raise awareness, promote a zero-tolerance culture, and encourage the prevention of sexual harm.

The club’s executive was elected at the launch. Newly elected President Jahla Lawrence is a sexual violence academic at Victoria University and Co-President of Victoria University’s Feminist Organisation. Lawrence joins eight other members on the executive.

The decision to form a club came about after a lack of consistent events. According to VUWSA President Tamatha Paul, the “campaigns work better on campus when they are spearheaded by clubs, external to the student associations”.

 

Paul said university clubs are able to co-ordinate events more efficiently compared to student associations, which “only have the time [and resources] to run infrequent, large-scale initiatives”.

The club aims to increase its presence on campus and raise awareness of the Thursdays in Black kaupapa in the coming year.

 

By holding regular events, Lawrence hopes she is able to build a community “dedicated to eradicating rape and rape culture”.

Students and staff are encouraged to show their support for the campaign by wearing black clothing on Thursdays. The colour black represents harm caused by sexual violence. In doing so, participants demonstrate a demand for structural and cultural change within student communities, both on and off campus.

The club’s first event will be a Thursdays in Black quiz night held in collaboration with several other university clubs. All proceeds will be donated to the Wellington Sexual Abuse HELP Foundation as part of their annual appeal.

 

Lawrence is certain this will be the first of many collaborative events held by the club. The quiz will be held this Tuesday, 28 May, in the Hunter Lounge at 5 p.m.

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