The University of Utah’s 2017 Women’s Week, March 6-10, explores how the normalization of rape is manifested and steps that individuals can take to disrupt it. The week’s events will also address how scholars and activists have pointed out society’s desensitization to rape in recent years.

Women’s Week is sponsored by the U’s Office for Equity and Diversity. Some activities include:

Campus and Community Panel Discussion: Rape is not Normal
March 6, 12-1 p.m., Hinckley Institute of Politics, Building 73, Room 110, 332 S. 1400 East

A panel discussion about the normalization of rape, policy and campus implications for different population groups. The panel will be facilitated by Flor Olivio, program coordinator at the Women’s Resource Center at the U. The panel will discuss ways in which everyone can take steps to disrupt the current status. Panelists include Rachel Alicia Griffin, assistant professor in the department of Communication at the U; Romeo Jackson, graduate student in the department of Educational Leadership and Policy; Stephany Murguia, outreach and access coordinator at the Rape Recovery Center; and Julie Valentine, assistant professor in the College of Nursing at Brigham Young University.

Gender on the Hill: H.B. 200, Sexual Assault Kit, Information Session
March 6, 5-6 p.m., Olpin Student Union Building, Room 319, 200 Central Campus Drive

This semester, students in a gender studies course worked closely Rep. Romero to strategize and lobby legislators about sexual assault prevention and rape culture, with the goal of passing H.B. 200, which would mandate the testing of every backlogged and current sexual assault kit. This information session will be used to strategize community lobbying around H.B. 200 and H.B. 251, campus advocate confidentiality amendments.

Film Screening: Private Violence
March 7, 4-7 p.m., Social Work Building, Okazaki Community Room (Room 155-A), 395 S. 1500 East

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in four women will be victims of severe physical violence by an intimate partner during their lifetimes. The film “Private Violence” examines intimate partner violence through the lens of two survivors who are working toward a brighter and safer future for all. The film will be followed by a presentation by filmmaker Kit Gruelle and a panel discussion.

Your Silence will not Protect You: An Afternoon with Staceyann Chin
March 8, 12:30-1:30 p.m., Olpin Student Union Building, Saltair Room, 200 Central Campus Drive

Staceyann Chin is a writer, poet, performer, activist and entertainer. Her written work has been featured in publications such as Essence magazine, The Jamaica Gleaner and The New York Times, among many others. Chin also writes for the stage and is widely known for co-writing and being an original performer in the Tony Award-winning Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam on Broadway. The New York Times has described Chin as “magnetic…one of the most captivating voices in New York” for her performance project, “Motherstruck!” She is also the author of “The Other Side of Paradise,” a memoir that chronicles her childhood and growing up in Jamaica. Staceyann Chin will deliver a performance of her original spoken word and poetry.

Countering a Culture of Violence Against Women: Student Workshop with Staceyann Chin
March 9, 12-1 p.m., Olpin Student Union Building, East Ballroom, 200 Central Campus Drive

Staceyann Chin asserts that telling her stories through poetry has given her the power to recognize that change comes from action. She firmly believes that those who have the power to speak have an obligation to address issues that impact them, but also to give a voice to communities that do not have the power to speak as loudly, or even at all. During this workshop, Chin will share the tools she uses in her own work to counter narratives of violence against women.

For more information, visit

Media Contacts

Estela Hernandezpublic relations specialist, University of Utah Office for Equity and Diversity
Office: 801-587-3342

Annalisa Purserassociate director, University Marketing & Communications
Office: 801-581-7295 Mobile: 435-232-0312

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