Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Representatives from the Women's Outreach Center used the South oval lawn
as an activist's canvas Wednesday to launch its first ever Red Flag Campaign.

WOC raises red flags on relationship abuse

Miniature red flags dotted the South oval today as part of the Women’s Outreach Center’s recently added campaign to promote awareness of abusive relationships.

Although the center sponsors other campaigns throughout the year dealing with domestic violence and sexual assault, the “Red Flag” campaign deals specifically with college dating relationships.

Teresa Schuster, administrative assistant for the Women’s Outreach Center, said the campaign focuses on the little things a partner can do that are abusive but are often dismissed.

“Coercion, isolation, emotional abuse, jealously,” Schuster said. “We are hoping to raise awareness on those types of issues.”

The campaign originated in 2006 by the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance as a response to statistics asserting relationship abuse affects one in five college relationships, according to the Red Flag Campaign Web site.

In Phase II of the campaign, volunteers for the center will canvas the campus with posters educating students about what is acceptable in relationships and issuing a call for those who witness questionable behavior to raise a red flag.

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