Crescenta Valley High School

Men in heels

Falling and falling, she loses control of her life and her ruby-red heels; there seems to be no end unlike Alice’s fall. A white rabbit, peering down, taunts her of her helplessness. However, there is an end. A rift in time and people are there to witness the red slippers and provide guidance.

It is difficult for women to find their way out of the maze of violence. They are blocked by impenetrable walls of social stigma. When men choose to wear Dorothy’s Ruby Red Slippers, they recognize the struggles women must face to click her heals out of the cycle of abuse.

In Antelope Valley’s third annual Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event, people are gathering to ultimately support domestic abuse victims. This includes men walking in heels in order to raise awareness for the impact of violence against women. There are notable moments such as marines running the mile in heels or other agencies creating their own apparel to show their support.

The community comes together to talk about uncomfortable subjects, such as gender relations and sexual violence. There are silent victims, those hesitant in seeking aide due to social stigma. The walkathon hopes to alleviate the shame associated with reaching out for help. Resources are readily available and reveal how there are those on the frontlines to help.

Mary Reina, a leader in the field and a forensics nurse of Antelope Valley Hospital, was intrigued with her field of expertise because it was a way to combat violence. Once into her position, she started to realize a different aspect of forensics. It was not only about gathering DNA, but bringing justice to people.

She emphasized that “violence is a health-care issue and it takes a community to fix it.”

In a past forum, she mentioned, “It takes a village to raise a child, but it takes preventive efforts to protect one.” Building onto this idea, she hopes to create a family justice center. Instead of having to go to various places for different treatments, victims could come here for help.

Reaching out to the next generation is a priority because it is the group that will lead on. If they have bad childhoods, then there is a higher likelihood of developing negative outcomes.