‘Voices of Men’ encouraging students to stand up to domestic violence and sexual assault

In the U.S. one in three women and one in six men will experience some form of sexual violence in their lifetime. That’s according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.

In a historic call to action for our area, students from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, Viterbo University, and Western Technical College came together in one room to learn about this very important topic.

Nearly 500 students, including the entire UWL football and baseball team, filled the UW-La Crosse student union on Tuesday night for a ‘Voices of Men’ event.

Coulee Region Voices of Men, or Level Up, is an organization with a mission to engage men of all ages in the fight against domestic violence and sexual assault.

“90% of the perpetrators of sexual assault and domestic violence are men. We know that 90% of men are not perpetrators. So, we’re working with 90% of men who are not perpetrators and encouraging them to kind of police the 10% by speaking out and standing up when they hear or see something inappropriate,” said President of Coulee Region Voices of Men Tom Berkedal.

Students heard presentations from sexual assault survivor, Chelsea Bongert, a resident of Appleton, and Middle School teacher who has survived three separate rapes in her young life, and a National Champion Slam Poet Kyle Tran Myhre, a graduate of Onalaska High School, whose message supports the battle against sexual assault and domestic violence.

Coulee Region Voices of Men also focuses on spreading their message to youth in our area, an age that can be most vital.

The organization has shared a presentation with Longfellow, Logan, and Lincoln Middle Schools. They’ll be heading to Onalaska High School on Wednesday to do the same.

To learn more about the work of Coulee Region Voices of Men visit their website at http://www.nhagainstabuse.org/news/coulee-region-voices-of-men/

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