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NSVRC Blogs by Damary Rodriguez


Damary Rodriguez is the Language Access Coordinator for the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape. Damary has worked as an advocate at a county domestic and sexual violence program. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Global Studies from Penn State University.

It has been over a year since the Harvey Weinstein allegations broke and brought attention to the #MeToo movement. It is amazing to see survivors sharing their stories but often marginalized folks, in particular trans people, are left out of the conversation.

Last year I wrote a blog on making space for Afro-Latinas during Hispanic Heritage Month. At the end of that blog I said: “As non-black Latinos, we should be centering Afro-Latina/x voices every month, and every day for that matter, not just for Hispanic Heritage Month.” Afterwards, I realized that sharing how to do that could be really helpful.  Here are a few ways to possibly help uplift Afro-Latina/x folks:

Listen

Recently we wrote a blog on black men and their thoughts on the #MeToo movement, the intersections of race and sexual violence, and how the movement has affected black folks. While writing that piece, we came across a video about Ciaspora, a block chain company for reporting sexual assault, created by students attending Texas A& M University. We posed some of the same questions from our previous blog to the Ciaspora Executive Team: Gentill Abdulla, Urel Djiogan, Princewill Imouokhome, and Michael Jordan, in hopes of getting their perspectives on sexual violence. 

Right now we are experiencing a pivotal moment in the anti-sexual violence movement. Since the allegations against Harvey Weinstein surfaced, numerous accounts of sexual harassment and sexual assault have been shared by people around the country and around the world. Sometimes it takes just one person to tell their story so others are empowered to come forward.

The #MeToo movement has been empowering to survivors of sexual violence. Tarana Burke founded #MeToo to "help survivors of sexual violence, particularly young women of color from low wealth communities, find pathways to healing.” As an advocate, I have seen few black women advocates and survivors, and encountered even fewer black men involved in the anti-sexual violence movement. So when I heard Charlamagne tha God from the radio show The Breakfast Club Power 105.1 FM explaining his realization that men have been raised on rape culture, I was pleasantly surprised It spurred the thought of reaching out to black men about their thoughts on the #MeToo movement, the intersections of race and sexual violence, and how the movement has affected black folks.

By Damary Rodriguez, Database and Resource Assistant for the National Sexual Violence Resource Center

Full disclosure: I am supporter of Zahira Kelly’s Patreon.