Hundreds rally in Oshkosh against sexual assault and domestic violence

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OSHKOSH, Wis. (WBAY)- Hundreds of people march through the streets of Oshkosh Wednesday night in an effort to end domestic violence and sexual assault.

The issue has been in the national and local spotlight after multiple women were attacked in Oshkosh earlier this fall and widespread claims of harassment and rape surfaced against Hollywood film mogul Harvey Weinstein.

While holding up signs and chanting, supporters of domestic abuse and sexual assault victims made their way through the streets of Oshkosh as part of a "Take Back the Night" event.

It stretched from the U-W Oshkosh College Campus to the Christine Ann Center.

UW-Oshkosh Freshman Katie Katinka said,"I think it's a very relevant issue today. I think it needs to be discussed a lot more, it needs to be brought to life so I think it's good that a lot of people are turning out to come and support."

Before the street rally, a number of people spoke out, providing information about community resources like counseling and support groups.

Others told personal stories about their own abuse.

Since the allegations against Harvey Weinstein, more women have been inspired to come forward, and there's even a 'me too' campaign that's been spreading across social media.

Marianne Radley of Reach Counseling said,"What we usually use is the numbers are one in three girls will be sexually abused by the time they turn 18, and one in six boys, so the numbers are high, and we're just here to make sure they know what resources are available to them."

The event normally draws between 300-400 people, but this year because of the national conversation the crowd was much larger. Organizers say that type of strength is important.

Alex Latimer, another student at UW-Oshkosh added,"I think it's important that people see who is still afraid, to express who they are, that people are here to support them, and show that they are not alone."