Red Flag Campaign at UMW Raises Awareness of Dating Violence

The Red Flag Campaign, an effort to bring an awareness of dating violence to college campuses, was held at the University of Mary Washington from Monday, Oct. 21 through Tuesday, Oct.29. The student-run campaign, which helps students to recognize “red flags” associated with dating violence and encourages them to say something if they see those signs, has been held at UMW for the past seven years.

Members of the UMW community wore read in honor of the Red Flag Campaign. Photo by Kimmie Barkley '14

Members of the UMW community wore read in honor of the Red Flag Campaign.
Photo by Kimmie Barkley ’14

The campaign’s central feature is a poster series depicting situations in which students should say something if they see a “red flag” in a relationship of a friend, acquaintance, neighbor or even in their own relationships. Students placed the posters and red flags throughout the Fredericksburg campus. Empowerhouse, the Rappahannock Council Against Sexual Assault, and the university’s Counseling and Psychological Services Center took part in the campaign to make students aware of the services they provide.  The UMW chapter of Student Anti-Violence Educators, or SAVE, coordinates the campaign in conjunction with UMW’s Office of Judicial Affairs and the Wellness Team, as part of the Healthy Campus 2020 initiative.

“Relationship violence can be very damaging to someone physically and emotionally,” said senior Kayla Zahrn, president of SAVE. “The goal of the campaign is to show these people that they are supported and also to help them find the resources they need if they need help getting out of a violent relationship.”

The Red Flag Campaign is held at college campuses across the country. UMW has participated since the beginning of the campaign and has been chosen to be a partner school for the past several years because of its strong work on the campaign.

About Brynn Boyer

Brynn Boyer is assistant director of media and public relations and a 2010 graduate of UMW.