In an interview with Bob Lee of BronxNet, María Trusa, a survivor of sexual abuse and founder of the Yo Digo No Más Movement and Fenix Arias, who is part of the organizers of the First Yo Digo No Más march, spoke about the importance of breaking the silence to stop sexual abuse and to raise awareness around the prevention of this scourge.
In the Sexual Assault Awareness Month, María shared her life story and how the Yo Digo No Más Movement came out, which was born after years of work to overcome an experience of sexual abuse at an early age that for many years she kept secret and that almost destroyed her life. For her, the main factor that contributes to the repetition of these stories is that society tends to remain silent on the subject.
The story of thousands of people
After the publication of her autobiographical book “Yo Digo No Más” (I Say No More), María says that many people, upon leading her story, approach her to tell her that they have too haven been victims of sexual abuse and most of them have remained silent because of the shame and fear of breaking their silence.
Precisely because of the silence that surrounds sexual abuse, Fenix Arias explains the importance of raising awareness and explains the work being done in the Yonkers School District, so that children who suffer any kind of abuse dare to tell what is happening to them and know that there is a system that can provide them with the support they need.
Likewise, she points out that in conjunction with the Yo Digo No Más Movement, the aim is to tell survivors, family members and the community in general that they are not alone and that they can join the first I Say No More to Sexual Violence march, to be held on April 30th to break the silence and empower children.
Breaking the silence
Many people live for years keeping silent that they have been victims of abuse and are in a permanent war with themselves, only when they are able to speak out can they move forward in their healing process. For this reason, María invites many voices to join together to break the silence and thus become stronger and prevent this trauma from being transmitted to the next generations.
How to participate in the march
There are several ways to participate in the first I Say No More to Sexual Violence March, organized by the Yo Digo No Más Movement, the Mayor’s Office, and the Yonkers School District. One is to speak out against sexual abuse and in favor of the victims by taking part in the mobilization. Also, organizations can become a sponsors and those who wish can join through donations to support the movement and activities.
The one-mile march starts at Yonkers City Hall and ends at the Eugenio María Hostos School, where workshops will be held to generate education and awareness around sexual abuse prevention with the support of specialized staff from the Stony Brooks and the Me Too Movement.
Find the full interview on the BronxNet’s YouTube Channel.