Teal prayer flags placed along Grand River to support Nassar survivors
Teal prayer flags have been placed along Grand River Avenue across from Michigan State's campus in support of survivors of Larry Nassar's sexual abuse. The City of East Lansing and the Parents of Sister Survivors Engage, or POSSE, partnered on the project.
POSSE started working in fall 2018 to create prayer flags for the hundreds of survivors of Nassar's sexual abuse, according to a press release from the City of East Lansing.
As of this week — the same week as It's On Us Week of Action at MSU and the first week of Sexual Assault Awareness Month — most of the flags have been hung along Downtown East Lansing.
The East Lansing Department of Public Works installed 326 of the flags Tuesday. According to the press release, the rest of the 505 flags — one for each known Nassar survivor — will be installed either this week or next week.
The flags are signed by at least 4,000 MSU students with words of support for survivors of sexual assault.
"In making these flags, our goal was to hang them near campus for all to see and, as prayer flags, spread their messages of goodwill on the wind throughout the community," Valerie von Frank, the mother of a Nassar survivor and founder of POSSE, said in the press release. "The flags will then be given to the individual survivors."
According to the press release, the rest of the flags will be installed either this week or next week.
East Lansing Mayor Mark Meadows said in the release he is honored to provide a public space for the prayer flags.
"We (the City of East Lansing) stand with the survivors and are pleased to be a part of this meaningful project," Meadows said.
Student and faculty group Reclaim MSU, the College of Arts and Letters student council, the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities student council, the MSU College Democrats, the Women's Health Alliance, MSU Women's Council and the Bailey Scholars Program also helped get the teal prayer flags signed by members of the community.
There will be a dedication ceremony for the prayer flags announced soon.