Educators, coaches, youth, and business leaders gather to explore masculinity and a world free from violence
December 08, 2017
Every day another story of sexual harassment, rape or domestic violence fills the headlines, exposing the epidemic reality of gender-based violence. Jane Doe Inc., The Massachusetts Coalition Against Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence, is inviting men and boys from across the Commonwealth to engage in conversations that explore what it will take to end the culture of toxic masculinity behind so much of this abuse and to make progress towards gender equity and racial justice.
Hundreds of people are expected to attend Jane Doe Inc.’s annual prevention summit, #ReimagineManhood: Exploring Gender Equity, Racial Justice, and Healthy Masculinities on Thursday, December 14, 2017, at the DCU Center in Worcester from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Speakers and workshops will focus on how to unpack masculinity, to understand the intersections of race and gender, and to imagine ways that each person can be part of the solution in preventing gender-based violence. “Every day we learn of tragedies in communities across the state connected to gender-based violence and are reminded that we must shift the culture that too often overlooks sexual and domestic violence and tolerates predators,” said Debra J. Robbin, Executive Director of Jane Doe Inc. “We want to offer a different vision where manhood is not defined by toxic masculinity but by positive and healthy notions of masculinities.”
Keynote speaker and acclaimed documentary filmmaker, activist, and educator, Byron Hurt, will also be part of an afternoon panel with Northeastern University Athletic Director Peter Roby, and Assistant Director of Innovation and Engagement for the National Latin@ Network Pierre Berastain. These men will reflect on their own journey and understanding of what it means to reimagine manhood and bring about a culture shift within their own personal and professional environments.
Byron Hurt put his upcoming remarks in content by stating, “Given the swirling media attention about sexual assault and rape in entertainment and politics, the #ReimagineManhood conference could not come at a better time to inspire boys and men to take a more active role in confronting abusive male behavior. This is a really important moment in our nation’s history to purposefully engage those who identify as boys and men to challenge ourselves to become healthier and whole beings, and to become better allies to girls and women and others who are marginalized because of their identities.”
Throughout the day, participants will learn about innovative and effective prevention strategies that work in the classrooms and the boardrooms. From responsible fatherhood programs, to culturally specific men’s groups and queer and trans boys of color projects, community-based, statewide, and national organizations are tailoring their work to promote healthy, positive, and non-violent social norms.
This summit will also initiate the 2018 Massachusetts White Ribbon Day Campaign, a platform that invites all men and boys to be part of the solution to prevent gender-based violence.
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For more information and to schedule an interview, please contact Toni Troop, JDI’s Director of Communications and Development, at 617-557-1807 or firstname.lastname@example.org.