Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-CA) and Congressman Tom Reed (R-NY) were joined by 24 of their colleagues today to introduce a bipartisan congressional resolution recognizing April as Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Mont.
“The reckoning we’ve seen in Congress and in the private sector against those who use their positions of power to not only commit abuses, but to get away with it, has erupted into a national awakening for many Americans and resulted in great progress in our fight against sexual violence,” Rep. Speier said. “That’s why it’s more important than ever that Congress supports National Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention month. We cannot become complacent, and we cannot rest on our laurels. We must honor this cause not just during this month, but all year round. We must support survivors by providing the resources needed to fight this epidemic of sexual violence.”
“Sexual assault must end. This issue has personally impacted my family and I care deeply about improving support systems for survivors,” Rep. Reed said. “Over the past year, we all have heard survivors of sexual assault come forward and bravely tell their stories bringing necessary sunshine to what was historically an issue people left in the shadows. We stand with them as we work to bring this epidemic to an end and firmly proclaim ‘no more’. This resolution continues the effort to educate everyone about this issue and is yet another example of our success in moving forward with ending sexual assault once and for all.”
Studies show one-in-five women and one-in-71 men will be raped in their lifetime, with children and young adults being most at risk of sexual assault. Men and women of all racial, social, religious affiliation, age, ethnicity and socioeconomic groups are affected by this epidemic. Additionally, sexual violence takes many forms, including acquaintance, stranger, spousal, and gang rape, incest, child sexual abuse, elder sexual abuse, sexual abuse and exploitation of disabled persons and members of the LGBTQ community, commercial sex trafficking, sexual harassment and stalking.
"Every 98 seconds, an American is sexually assaulted. This crime affects hundreds of thousands of people every year, in every community and congressional district across the country. It's vital to continue this national conversation around sexual violence. RAINN is thankful for this resolution recognizing April as Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month. We look forward to continuing to work with Congress to prevent sexual assault and support survivors," said Rebecca O'Connor, Vice President of Public Policy, RAINN.
"We are so grateful to Congress and the leadership of Representatives Reed and Speier for standing up for survivors and elevating the work of rape crisis centers by honoring Sexual Assault Awareness Month." Terri Poore, Policy Director, National Alliance to End Sexual Violence
If you or someone you know has been impacted by sexual assault, please contact local law enforcement to report this crime. Additional resources are available for survivors. To learn more, contact the National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline for safe and confidential help at 800-656-HOPE (4673).