HHS students take pledge against dating abuse

HHS students take pledge against dating abuse
Posted on 02/16/2018

Harlandale High School students participated in various activities this week to support the national campaign “Love is Respect,” which empowers teens to prevent and end dating abuse.

According to the campaign, one in three teens in the U.S. will experience physical, sexual or emotional abuse by someone they are in a relationship with before they become adults.

In order to help spread awareness and start a conversation, HHS art students unveiled a chalk art mural in the school’s courtyard featuring colorful art and positive messages such as “Love is Respect” and “Peace and Love.”

During their lunch hour, students were encouraged to sign their name and trace their hand along the mural to pledge that they will have healthy, safe relationships free from violence.

“We are aiming to spread the message and, hopefully, promote positive relationships,” HHS Social Worker Michael Bustos said. “We try to get student input and student situations come up, so we try to have those as teaching situations here on campus because school is not only academics, it’s also social learning.”

Sophomore Anna Tristan was one of the chalk artists and said she enjoyed working on the mural to support the campaign.

“I really liked how everybody’s ideas came together,” she said. “It’s nice to see how everybody included the words ‘love’ and ‘respect’ because, to me, that is the truth about relationships.”

Other activities included guest speakers and a skit performed by the Theatre Arts students related to teen violence, which depicted what teens often go through relationships. Students also heard from the San Antonio Police Department, where they learned about the warning signs of domestic abuse and how it can also affect the community.

“We’re hoping to just spread the word in regards to the issue itself and, hopefully, bring some talking points to students and help address those issues,” Bustos concluded.

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