WASHINGTON (March 26, 2019) – The ‘me too.’ HBCU tour will visit Howard University on Tuesday, April 2 complete with a full day of events geared toward students, faculty, and administrators who want to engage in the movement to end sexual violence and rape culture. ‘me too.’ Founder Tarana Burke and Yaba Blay, two of this decade’s most prominent figures within the intersections of dismantling racism and ending sexual violence, are pairing up to facilitate this critical work.
“Our goal is to reframe and expand the global conversation around sexual violence to speak to the needs of a broader spectrum of survivors,” Burke said.
The ‘me too.’ HBCU tour experience at Howard University, coordinated through the Office of the Dean of the Chapel will include strategic convenings with campus leaders; fireside chats with Tarana Burke and Yaba Blay, featuring author and activist Darnell Moore; while highlighting the campus-wide commitment to disrupting and preventing sexual assault.
Howard University’s Office of Interpersonal Violence Prevention (IVPP) serves as a resource center to students, faculty and staff through advocacy, education, and training. The IVPP Office encompasses the university’s commitment to enhancing the safety and quality of life of all students, staff, and faculty. Through prevention and educational programming regarding sexual harassment, sexual violence and sexual misconduct the IVPP Office trains faculty, staff, and students on consensual behavior, bystander intervention strategies, and information on where to get resources. IVPP also assists survivors of sexual assault and other forms of interpersonal violence with advocacy support (i.e. court accompaniment, safety planning, access to protection orders, etc.), connection to medical assistance, particularly the SANE exam offered at the Washington Hospital Center, counseling services, and housing and academic accommodations as needed.
The Title IX Office at Howard University is responsible for implementing the University’s Title IX Policy, which prohibits all forms of sex discrimination, including sexual harassment and sexual violence. The Title IX Office ensures that all students and employees are appropriately trained and made aware of their rights and responsibilities under the Title IX Policy. The Title IX Office is also responsible for responding to all reports of sex discrimination, harassment and violence. The response includes investigations to determine whether a violation has occurred and putting in place measures designed to eliminate the conduct, prevent its recurrence, and remedy any adverse effects of the conduct on individuals, members of the campus community, or University programs.
“It’s easy to get swept up in the energy of viral moments like the one we’re in with ‘me too.’, but we need not forget that they are spurred by real, grassroots movements, typically led by Black people and people of color,” Blay stated. “This college tour is a chance to move beyond social media and give young people a place to process, reflect, and strategize. We are committed to facilitating commitments from HBCUs and helping students and faculty create solutions for safer campuses and communities.”
‘me too.’ Events on Tuesday, April 2:
All events listed below are only open to Howard University faculty, staff, students, and alumni. The fireside chat is open to the broader public.
- HU x ‘me too.’ Writing & Creative Works Panel: A panel discussion around writing/creative work on me too movement, interpersonal violence, sexual assault. This event is scheduled at 11:00 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. in the Founder’s Library Browsing Room
- Strategic Campus Convening: Workshop led by the ‘me too’ team for invited guests, campus faculty and student stakeholders, and influences. The event is scheduled at noon – 2:00 p.m. in the Founder’s Library Browsing Room.
- HU IVPP Info Session: Sharing of program events, services, and resources for the HU community led Office of IVPP and the HU Title IX Office. The event is scheduled at 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. in the Founder’s Library Browsing Room.
- For Men Only Panel Event at the Founders Browsing Room: Discussion panel curated by the ‘me too’ team, led by males for males about sexual assault. This event is at 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. in the Founder’s Library Browsing Room
- Fireside Chat at Cramton Auditorium: Conversation with me too founder, Tarana Burke and special invited guests, led by the ‘me too’ team and the Office of the Chapel. A Darnell Moore book signing will proceed fireside chat. The book signing is at 6:00 p.m. and the fireside chat is at 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. in Cramton Auditorium. This event is open to the public.
Other stops on the Spring 2019 tour include Spelman College, Clark Atlanta University, & Morehouse College on April 9 (Atlanta, Ga.); Alabama State University on April 12 (Montgomery, Ala.); North Carolina Central University on April 18 (Durham, N.C.); and Florida A&M University on April 19 (Tallahassee, Fla.). Registration for spring dates are now available at https://metooHBCU.eventbrite.com.
The tour will continue in Fall 2019 and Spring 2020. Stops and dates to be announced later this year.
Howard University Office of Chapel Contact: Leelannee K. Malin, email@example.com, 202.806.7280
Howard University Media Contact: Imani Pope-Johns, 202.515.1847, Imani.firstname.lastname@example.org
About Tarana Burke
For more than 25 years, activist and advocate Tarana J. Burke has worked at the intersection of racial justice and sexual violence. Fueled by commitments to interrupt sexual violence and other systemic inequalities disproportionately impacting marginalized people, particularly Black women and girls, Tarana has created and led various campaigns focused on increasing access to resources and support for impacted communities, including the ‘me too’ movement.
Since ‘me too.’, the movement she created more than ten years ago, went viral in 2017, Tarana has emerged as a global leader in the evolving conversation around sexual violence and the need for survivor-centered solutions. Her theory of using empathy to empower survivors is changing the way the nation and the world think about and engage with survivors, and her belief that healing isn’t a destination but a journey has touched and inspired millions of survivors who previously lived with the pain, shame and trauma of their assaults in isolation.
About Dr. Yaba Blay
Dr. Yaba Blay is the Dan Blue Endowed Chair in Political Science at North Carolina Central University. A native ethnographer and creative producer, her scholarship centers on global Black identities and the politics of embodiment, with particular attention to the lived experiences of Black women and girls. She is one of today’s leading voices on colorism and global skin color politics.
Applauded by O, The Oprah Magazine for her social media activism, Dr. Blay is the creator and producer of a number of online campaigns including #PrettyPeriod - a visual celebration of dark-skinned Black beauty - and #ProfessionalBlackGirl - a webseries and digital community dedicated to celebrating everyday, ‘around-the-way’ #BlackGirlMagic.
Dr. Blay is the author of (1)ne Drop: Shifting the Lens on Race; and her voice is featured in A Changing America: 1968 and Beyond, a video installation on race relations exhibited in the National Museum of African American History & Culture.
About Darnell Moore
Darnell L. Moore is the author of No Ashes in the Fire: Coming of Age Black and Free in America. He is currently Head of Strategy and Programs at Breakthrough US and is the former Editor-at-Large at CASSIUS (an iOne digital platform) and a senior editor and correspondent at Mic. He is co-managing editor at The Feminist Wire and an editor of The Feminist Wire Books (a series of University of Arizona Press). He is also a writer-in-residence at the Center on African American Religion, Sexual Politics and Social Justice at Columbia University.
A prolific writer, Darnell has been published in various media outlets including MSNBC, The Guardian, Huffington Post, EBONY, The Root, The Advocate, OUT Magazine, Gawker, Truth Out, VICE, Guernica, Mondoweiss, Thought Catalog, Good Men Project and others, as well as numerous academic journals including QED: A Journal in GLBTQ World Making, Women Studies Quarterly, Ada: A Journal of Gender, New Media & Technology, Transforming Anthropology, Black Theology: An International Journal, and Harvard Journal of African American Policy, among others. He also edited the art book Nicolaus Schmidt: Astor Place, Broadway, New York: A Universe of Hairdressers (Kerber Verlag) and has published essays in several edited books.
He assisted in organizing the Black Lives Matters Ride to Ferguson in the wake of Mike Brown’s tragic murder and along with Alicia Garza, Patrisee Cullors, and Opal Tometti (#BlackLivesMatter Co-Founders) developed the infrastructure for the BLM Network.
About 'me too.'
The ‘me too.’ movement was founded in 2006 to help survivors of sexual violence, particularly Black women and girls, and other young women of color from low wealth communities, find pathways to healing.
In less than six months, because of the viral #metoo hashtag, a vital conversation about sexual violence has been thrust into the national dialogue. What started as local grassroots work has expanded to reach a global community of survivors from all walks of life and helped to de-stigmatize the act of surviving by highlighting the breadth and impact of sexual violence worldwide.
Media and Community Partners: Lifetime Network and The Root
For more information about ‘me too.’, visit metoomvmt.org. Images can be found here. Requests for interviews can be sent to email@example.com.
About Howard University
Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private, research university that is comprised of 13 schools and colleges. Students pursue studies in more than 120 areas leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University operates with a commitment to Excellence in Truth and Service and has produced four Rhodes Scholars, 11 Truman Scholars, two Marshall Scholars, one Schwarzman Scholar, over 70 Fulbright Scholars and 22 Pickering Fellows. Howard also produces more on-campus African-American Ph.D. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University visit www.howard.edu
Media Contact: Imani Pope-Johns, Imani.firstname.lastname@example.org