SOURCE: MARC USA

MARC USA

January 25, 2017 09:57 ET

My Sister's Keeper Joins Project Know No To Raise Awareness of Sexual Consent on Campuses

CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwired - January 25, 2017) - Project Know No, the national movement to raise awareness and understanding of sexual consent, is now collaborating with The Black Women's Health Imperative's My Sister's Keeper program to bring its message to the nation's historically black colleges and universities.

Know No was launched last September in the wake of light sentences for campus sexual offenders and the lack of clarity around sexual consent, particularly when victims are intoxicated or unconscious or when they know the attacker. The goal is to spark conversations and change behavior around this increasingly pervasive issue.

Since the launch, colleges around the country have held Know No events to create awareness and connect students to campus resources for prevention and victim support. My Sister's Keeper, an advocacy and leadership-building initiative of The Black Women's Health Imperative, has now joined with Know No to provide awareness and education on the campuses it serves with events planned at select HBCUs, including Southern University and A&M College, in the coming months.

Know No is anchored by a brief video https://youtu.be/az6aPgTR_fU dramatizing the plight of an unconscious sexual assault victim. Set to the track of "Til It Happens to You" by Lady Gaga and Diane Warren, who donated the use of the music to help spread the Know No message, the video has been seen more than a million times on social media.

Stephanie Franke, Creative Director at advertising agency MARC USA and Know No co-founder, explains, "We wanted to bring the issue of consent to life in a way that left no gray area -- no question about what constitutes consent. We realized that conversations need to go beyond 'no' means 'no'. Just as important, if a woman -- or man -- can't say 'no,' due to unconsciousness, intoxication or any other reason, they can't say 'yes' either."

The website KnowNo.us http://www.knowno.us includes a quick quiz where visitors can test their knowledge of consent, links to consent definitions by state and resources for victims of sexual assault. The same quiz is available at Know No events on campuses.

The Black Women's Health Imperative initiated the collaboration with Know No as another way to connect with the young women in its My Sister's Keeper program and encourage them to support each other in making healthy choices, protect one another from intimate partner violence and serve as leaders on campus and in communities. "My Sister's Keeper encourages every woman on campus to get involved, get informed and use her voice as her sister's keeper and strongest advocate," said Osub Ahmed, My Sister's Keeper project manager.

Snake Roth, MARC USA Executive Producer and Know No co-founder, describes the effort as a movement. "We asked ourselves if people understood consent, would they still make the same choices? Would a young person under the influence find the sense to stop? Would a victim realize it was not her or his fault and report the incident? So, we are asking the country to help us spread the word."

About Know No -- Know No was founded at MARC USA, an advertising agency with offices in Boston, Chicago, Miami and Pittsburgh. It is not an organization, but a movement with the mission of raising awareness and understanding of the definition of sexual consent. The goals are to reduce assaults, encourage victims to seek help and report incidents, and foster support for them from friends, families and colleagues. www.knowno.us

About The Black Women's Health Imperative -- The Black Women's Health Imperative is the only national organization dedicated to improving the health and wellness of the nation's 21 million Black women and girls -- physically, emotionally and financially. It identifies the most pressing health issues and invests in the best of the best strategies, partners and organizations that share its goal: ensuring Black women live longer, healthier, more prosperous lives. bwhi.org

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