'Slutwalk' a success in Grand Rapids

11:39 PM, Jun 25, 2011   |    comments
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Women and men from around West Michigan, protested against the belief that a woman's appearance, may explain, or excuse the act of sexual assault.

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) - Nearly 150 people gathered at Veterans Park in downtown Grand Rapids Saturday, for the event known as 'Slutwalk'.

Women and men from around West Michigan protested against the belief that a woman's appearance may explain or excuse the act of sexual assault. The marchers walked down Fulton Street, through Monroe Center, for a round trip that concluded back at Veterans Park.

Organizers for the Grand Rapids 'Slutwalk' brought the event to town, after the success of previous demonstrations worldwide. Those attending dressed both casually and provocatively, all to make a point that a woman's body should be respected and what she wears should never lead to a sexual assault.

"I think there are a lot of aspects of rape culture that people don't understand. So I think this is a good place to start with events that address rape, assault, reproductive rights, sexuality, and consent," said organizer Briana Urena-Ravelo.

Many who attended felt the event sent a strong message to the community.

Event organizers say they were pleased with the turnout of this first-time event in Grand Rapids, and it may be a catalyst for other marches in the future.

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