Violence prevention walk today

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Submitted to the Optic

The New Mexico Highlands University Campus Violence Prevention Program will sponsor a “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” event today (Wednesday) to mark Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

The campus event begins at 5:30 p.m. at the university’s Champ Tyrone Music Building parking lot at 11th Street and Baca Avenue and winds through campus to the Sala de Madrid Building. The public is welcome.

Worldwide, “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” events are aimed at stopping rape, sexual assault, and gender violence. At the Highlands University walk and other locales, men walk a mile wearing women’s high-heeled shoes to protest sexual violence.

University President Jim Fries and Fidel Trujillo, dean of students, are also scheduled to participate.

Kimberly Valdez-Blea, director of the university’s Campus Violence Prevention Program. “We’re hoping the campus and Las Vegas community will join us to bring more awareness to sexual assault, and to support those who have been impacted.

Corilia Ortega, a victim’s advocate for the Campus Violence Prevention Program and a clinical psychology graduate student said along the walk there will be activities designed to keep the walkers engaged and bring a lens to myths about sexual assault.

At the conclusion of the walk, mayor Alfonso Ortiz, Jr. will read a proclamation in support of “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes Day in Las Vegas.”

The guest speaker will be educator Milton Brown, Ph.D., who retired as dean of the School of Education at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Ky.

“I think the work the Highlands Campus Violence Prevention Program is doing is absolutely essential to raising awareness, and will hopefully lead to different behaviors,” Brown said.

For more details about the April 24 “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” event contact Valdez-Blea or Ortega at 454-3445.