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Cast educates base community about sexual assault prevention

By Joycelyn Biggs | | June 20, 2013

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Playing out several scenarios, interjecting staggering statistics and helpful tips concerning sexual assault prevention, No Zebras and More Productions educated base personnel during training at Marine Corps Logistics Base, June 14.
The session at the Base Theater began with a question and answer game. The game’s host made a variety of statements while the contestants provided answers. Throughout the game, they sparred with words and comments.
With each scene, the content became more serious and the information more thought-provoking.
“Close your eyes,” Paul Carbini, cast member, No Zebras and More Productions, instructed the audience.
“Now think of four women in your life that you love, he said. “Picture their faces.”
After a brief pause, he continued, “Open your eyes. Who were your four women? Your mother, your sister, maybe your wife or even your child,” Carbini offered as suggestions.
“Now think about this. One in four women will be sexually assaulted by a perpetrator in her lifetime,” he said. “Will one of those women be the loved ones you just thought about?”
Marines and Civilian-Marines now sat silently. Various facial expressions could be seen. Some were crying, closing their eyes and burying their heads in their hands.
Cast members explained that 70 percent of violence against women is perpetrated by someone they know. The goal of this training is to decrease those statistics by creating a bystander intervention mentality among the audience here today, they said.
“Our purpose is to create a change in society that will not tolerate that behavior, Christie Peterson, technical crew member and educator, No Zebras and More Productions, said. “We are attempting to create a no zebra way of thinking. A no zebra way of thinking relates to zebras in the wild.”
A zebra’s survival tactic in the wild is to not get involved when another zebra is being attacked, she added. The zebras offer no help to the unfortunate victim, and Peterson then compared that mentality to people.
“Often people see things, but decide not to take action, she said. “In other instances, people are not even aware they are witnessing a dangerous situation. Our training provides a visual of how to identify danger signs and also provides tips and tools that can be used to help a victim before it’s too late. Being able to identify the danger signs in early stages often prevents an individual from becoming a victim.”
Jamie Hurst, sexual assault response coordinator, MCLB Albany, explained the Marine Corps is using this training in an attempt to educate the base community about sexual assault prevention.
According to Marine Corps standards, sexual assault is not an acceptable behavior, Hurst said.
“In the Marine Corps, 98 percent of Marines are following the correct ethos,” she said. “We acknowledge that is a high percentage, but one victim is too many. My goal is to create a command climate where every Marine feels comfortable in reporting anything that takes place.”
“This is a very different method of training,” Lance Cpl. Chaz Dowling, administrative specialist, MCLB Albany, said. “I like it better than the power point presentations. I will remember the statistic of one in four women being assaulted because it was presented in an interesting way.”

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