The fourth annual Denim Day Detroit (aPUREmovement) and the African American 490 Challenge Campaign (AA490) hosted the Jeans and Justice Fashion Show fundraiser in honor of Sexual Violence Awareness month on April 26, 2017. The event was held at the Sound Board Theater located inside the Motor City Casino in downtown Detroit. One of the event’s objectives was to raise funds for the 11,341 unopened, untested and abandoned rape kits found in an abandoned Detroit Police Department storage unit over seven years ago, and to also bring awareness to Denim Day, an event where people are encouraged to wear denim to raise awareness of rape and sexual assault.
The AA490 Challenge Campaign exists to raise both funds and awareness tied to sexual assaults and investigations in Detroit and beyond. Led by AA490 president Kim Trent, AA490 is a coalition of African American women and women-led organizations united to raise $657,090 to pay for testing 1,341 rape kits. As of the night of the event, approximately $460K was raised, enough to process 940 DNA rape kits.
Denim Day is an annual international rape prevention and awareness campaign that enlists women and men from all walks of life and from all over the world, to wear denim on a common day as a visible challenge to rape culture. It was born when an Italian man’s rape conviction was overturned when an appeals court ruled that because his teenage victim wore tight jeans on the day of the assault, she tacitly consented to have sex with him. Disgusted by the court’s decision, women members of the Italian Parliament wore jeans to work the next day as a sign of solidarity with the victim. Now, people worldwide participate in Denim Day to show unity and support to sexual assault survivors.
The Jeans and Justice Fashion Show fundraiser’s designers included Atiba Saniyka of Saniyka International Designs, Patricia Hollis of Marsa Alam Collection, Hosanna Smith of Peculiar People Designs, Sianna Treece of the Sianna Treece Collection, Kenyetta Caldwell of Creo by Keca Designs, Herman Marbury of Ravage Designs, Sydney Tucker of Damsel in Distress Designs, Scarlett Monroe of Scarlett Redfunk Monroe and celebrity stylist Marv Neal of Jeanous Denim. The event was emceed by Detroit’s own Lola George and Mahogany Jones, ONEFREQ, and the NLR Experience gave great performances. The Sasha Center was also awarded a check for $500 for their efforts against sexual assault in the community.
Take a look at the night’s fashions below. Let us know what you think about the event and the fashions in the comment section.
Photo gallery credit: Porsha Monique for Steed Media except where noted otherwise