The University Students’ Council is spreading awareness about consent using Halloween as their platform.
The USC's Women’s Issues Network and Health Promotions Western have partnered to run the event as part of Consent and Sexual Violence Awareness Week. The purpose of My Costume is Not Consent is to raise awareness about consent, using Halloween and costumes to spread the message that no matter what someone is wearing, consent must be verbally and enthusiastically given.
Carina Gabriele, a fourth-year Faculty of Arts and Humanities student is the coordinator of the Women’s Issue Network and one of the event's coordinators.
“Students will be finishing mid-terms and celebrating Halloween, which is a really exciting time for students," Gabriele said. "We just want to make sure that the messaging is always there.”
The event features a booth in the University Community Centre with costumed mannequins. Students can drop by to ask questions and discuss consent.
USC health promotions coordinators and Western students Micah Hansen and Courtney Feeney are also coordinating the event.
As a coordinator, Feeney deals with a broad spectrum of health and wellness topics such as sexual consent and health. Some familiar events the health promotions coordinators run are “Get Tested” and “World Contraception Day.”
“We are using Halloween as a platform to talk about consent and to reinforce the message that no matter what you’re wearing, whether it be a costume, uniform or you walking down the street, that is not consent, period, full stop,” Feeny said.
Students will also be able to enter a draw to win an iPad mini and USC platinum cards by taking a photo with the banner at the booth and by posting it on social media using the hashtag #MyCostumeIsNotConsent to share what consent means to them.
“The point is not to sensationalize it; it’s to ensure that the message is getting around to students as much as possible,” Gabriele said.
The booth will be set up between Oct. 26 to 31 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.