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Reynoldsburg High School Promotes Safe Dating
REYNOLDSBURG (James Jackson/Kate Liebers) -- Reynoldsburg city leaders proclaimed Feb. 11 as the "Day of Respect and Safe Dating."
The day was commemorated with the graduation ceremony of 26 Reynoldsburg High School students who completed a safe dating program.
Mariah Slater, a high school junior and graduate of the program, said she learned how prevalent abusive relationships can be.
"I learned about warning signs and that it can happen to anybody," Slater said. "It's not just certain people. Certain people don't go through this. Everyone is affected by this."
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said that he wants the youth to be as prepared as possible. He spoke about the notorious Steubenville rape case he prosecuted.
"One girl passes out because she drank so much, and then she was raped," DeWine said. "And I described that as a tragedy for so many people."
Tia Johnson, a Reynoldsburg graduate, said spoke from personal experience when illustrating the dangers of an abusive relationship.
"I picked up a lot of bad habits with the yelling, screaming, fighting -- I mean, eventually, the wheels turned and I wasn't prepared for it," she said.
She hoped people would remember to respect one another, especially during the Valentine's Day holiday.
"Know what you want," Johnson said. "Know what you will not stand for and know you have a purpose in this life."
As part of "Day of Respect and Safe Dating," Reynoldsburg students signed purple hearts, promising to not physically or emotionally harm others.