Springfield’s Clothesline Project: ‘I think we all have a story of pain’

More than 100 shirts that tell the stories of the effect of violent crime locally are on display in the Springfield City Plaza as a part of the national Clothesline Project this weekend.

The Clothesline Project is a 30-year campaign to tell the stories of people affected by violence – whether it be domestic violence, sexual assault or other violent crime – through displays of T-shirts hanging on clotheslines in public spaces.

This year, the local display focuses mostly on survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, but last year the Victim Witness division expanded Clark County’s project to include all violent crime, Clark County Prosecutor’s Office director of victim advocacy Tiffany Wright said.

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

“I think we all have a story of pain,” she said. “It’s a way someone can say, ‘Hey, you’re not alone in this. We’re here for you. The community is backing you.’”

Many shirts this year were designed by people as young as middle and high school students.

“We have some that have told their story for the very first time,” Wright said.

ExplorePHOTOS; Victims share their stories through Clothesline Project

Last year, a person older than 80 told a story of the effect of crime on a t-shirt as a part of the project. The person told project coordinators that she’d never told anyone about her experience.

Wright said the public is invited to tell their story through a shirt to be added to the display, anonymously.

The clotheslines were up all of Friday, and they’ll also be on display on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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October is National Domestic Violence Awareness month.

Bill Lackey contributed to this story.

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