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Trigger Warning: The below discusses sexual assault awareness month.

Here at Issued, I did a check in with my entire team, and at the end I asked each member about something they are passionate about that could be a potential project. One of them paused in our one-on-one, took a deep breathe, and softy said, "sexual assault awareness month". Continuing with, "I am a survivor". Sparking a larger conversation about what our place is in all of this, and what we could do as an industry leader to shed light on this daunting topic.

In the coming weeks, I, myself looked into the information I could find on the internet about sexual assault, non-profits, the legality of it all, and what brands and companies are doing about it. And in all honesty, I am bewildered with the lack of information I could find outside of the #METOO movement.

After a few days of spinning my wheels, I posed it to my team of fourteen, and you won't believe what happened next. Individually, members on my team began telling me about their experiences with being sexually assaulted. Out of the fourteen people on my team, 6 of them felt comfortable letting me know either they themselves have personally been and or they know someone who has been sexually assaulted.

While I haven't personally been affected by this, I know friends, family and team members who have. This is not just a fashion problem, based on the things you wear, how you look, where you frequent, this is a global problem and one the industry tends to ignore.

What Issued plans to do: Throughout the month of April 2023, we will be releasing stories from victims and survivors. We hope that this will spread awareness, and in some small way, heal our survivors by allowing them to share their stories anonymously.

If this has happened to you or someone you know, call 567-SHATTER for support from Take Back The Nigh Foundation National Sexual Assault Legal Hotline, available 24/7 so you can immediately connect with a real person ready to help.


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