FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Several people gathered outside the Allen County Courthouse on Monday to “Free the Nipple” and raise awareness about gender equality.
Today, women are legally allowed to take their shirts off in 36 states. Indiana is one of the last remaining states that make it illegal for women to uncover their nipples in public. While it also remains illegal in Tennessee and Utah, in at least ten other states no law expressly prohibits women going topless in public.
Free the Nipple is a global campaign and fast growing movement. According to Free the Nipple’s website, the mission behind the campaign is to raise awareness and affect change in the areas of inequality that both men and women experience today.
The campaign argues that men and women should be granted the same freedom to appear topless in public and also have that protection under the law.
The movement was sparked following the release of the documentary feature film “Free the Nipple” in 2012.
According to the Free the Nipple Fort Wayne Facebook page, participants plan to gather for a monthly rally. Women were instructed to wear pasties or “X’s” over the nipple and aureola area, which is legal in Indiana. Men were encouraged to wear bikini tops to highlight gender inequality, or whatever was most comfortable.
According to the Facebook event page, a total of 80 people were at least planning on being in attendance.