In recent weeks, we at NO MORE have been both horrified and heartened to see so many people come forward with their reflections and experiences around the #MeToo viral hashtag. And we have wondered whether, just maybe, we could really be at a tipping point for change this time. Not because of a famous movie executive and some very famous victims, but because of the sum of so many similar, outrageous and relatable stories of our own and from our friends, family members, and colleagues over too many years.
In order to not let this moment slip away, we know we must continue to keep the volume up and push for real reforms, more support, true cultural change.
That is why we are encouraged today by Uber’s announcement of a multi-year commitment as part of its “Driving Change” campaign that includes both internal and external sexual assault and domestic violence awareness and prevention initiatives in partnership with us and a number of organizations that are part of NO MORE’s coalition, including Raliance (the coalition of leading sexual assault organizations: California Coalition Against Sexual Assault, National Alliance to End Sexual Violence and National Sexual Violence Resource Center), the National Network to End Domestic Violence, Women of Color Network, Inc., Casa de Esperanza, A CALL TO MEN, and the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs.
“To make progress and to address a deeply embedded culture of violence, we want – and in fact need – to be in as many boardrooms, classrooms, and living rooms as possible, as well as on the networks and platforms where people live, work and play.”
Given NO MORE’s dedication to getting the issues of domestic violence, sexual assault and abuse out of the shadows and encouraging everyone — women and men, youth and adults, from all walks of life — to be part of the solution, this partnership offers a huge opportunity to raise awareness, support prevention initiatives, and ensure that potentially lifesaving resources are prominently available.
NO MORE is committed to working with individuals, organizations and corporations that are truly interested in bringing about change. To make progress and to address a deeply embedded culture of violence, we want – and in fact need – to be in as many boardrooms, classrooms, and living rooms as possible, as well as on the networks and platforms where people live, work and play.
This has been our philosophy and guiding principle since we launched in 2013. We set out to create a powerful, visual way to express support for ending domestic violence and sexual assault, much like the red equal sign for LGBTQ rights and marriage equality, or the red ribbon for HIV/AIDS awareness. We sought to unite anti-violence organizations into a coalition. And we developed public service announcements (PSAs), as well as other marketing and fundraising tools, to make our voices even louder and stronger.
In just a few years, NO MORE has successfully brought together the largest coalition of advocacy groups, service providers, governmental agencies, major corporations, universities, communities and individuals, all under a unifying symbol in support of a world free of violence. Nearly 1,000 organizations and 75,000 individuals have joined NO MORE. Hundreds of schools have NO MORE groups, and another almost 30 local city-wide, state-wide and international NO MORE programs have been born. Thanks to our partners, our PSAs have gotten more than 4.4 billion impressions.
But, of course, we have only scratched the surface. Even without the recent spotlight, we know that much more work needs to be done to change the fact that, on average:
- 1 in 3 women experience sexual assault or domestic violence at some point in their lives;
- 1 in 6 men experience sexual abuse before the age of 18; and
- 65% of victims who come forward say no one helped them.
It has become increasingly clear that we must be willing to not only speak to the “choir,” but also to engage with new organizations that give us the opportunity to expand our reach to new audiences and potential allies. Because it is often with those new “outside the box” partners that we have the best chance to help guide learning about the issues, correct any existing misconceptions or ignorant perceptions, institute sound and supportive policies, and increase accountability.
It was with this in mind that we entered into and will continue the important work with Uber. They have shown a real interest in learning, taken concrete steps to improve their internal culture and policies, and dedicated significant resources and the priceless reach of their platform to increase awareness and strengthen prevention efforts.
Together, we have the great potential to reach, engage and positively impact Uber’s employees, millions of riders and drivers who utilize Uber’s application every day, and their communities around the country and ultimately the world.
Simply put, it is one powerful way to turn up the volume.
We hope it will reverberate – that even more people and companies will use their voices and platforms to say: NO MORE.