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VUWSA stands behind student rally against sexual violence

VUWSA stands behind student rally against sexual violence, calls on all workplaces to do better.

The Victoria University of Wellington Students’ Association is proudly supporting students’ right to demand a workplace free from sexual harassment and violence.

Recent stories of unwelcome and unsafe sexualised behaviour towards interns and graduates in the professional services have left the student body unsettled and ready to challenge the toxic culture that seems to have thrived for too long.

VUWSA President Marlon Drake says while the allegations against Russell McVeagh started the conversation, the firm’s inability to truly acknowledge the extent of the issue, or appropriately deal with the staff at the centre of the allegations, has forced students to act. “We respect and applaud the women who had the courage to first speak out and lay complaints and we support our students now who are demanding a change in culture and practice within all law firms and other professional services.”

“The primary function of a students’ association, to support and encourage people who want to see change happen and that’s what we’re aiming to do with this rally,” Drake says. VUWSA members will proudly lead the march, alongside students from the VUW Law Students’ Society and VUW Feminist Law Society on Thursday, 15 March.

Several hundred students have already registered their interest in next week’s March on Midland on Facebook.

Supporters are asked to gather at the VUW Law School grounds on Bunny St at 11:45am on Thursday, 15 March. The March will begin from 12:30pm and speeches from students and politicians will be held at Midland Park from 1pm.

People attending the march are asked to wear black, in solidarity with the national Thursdays in Black campaign which aims to create a world without rape and violence through awareness, action and support.

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