Conversations

Conversations

Why do we silence sexual assault conversations? Sexual assault in my opinion is a very controversial topic. Not in the sense that people agree or disagree in its seriousness but rather in the degree of how prevalent discussions and conversations surrounding sexual assault should be in our society. I bet if I asked you to define what exactly sexual assault was, a lot of you would be able to give me an answer that is relatively close to its legal definition.  Some of you might even be able to go a step further and recite some facts and statistics surrounding sexual assault. But how many of these facts and statistics would be related to the mental and emotional components of being sexually assaulted? It seems as if the only time it’s okay talking about sexual assault openly is when you’re talking about it in terms of numbers or facts. Why? Because it’s just easier that way, by choosing an apathetic route towards...
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SAFFRON Centre standing with sexual assault survivors

SAFFRON Centre standing with sexual assault survivors

http://www.sherwoodparknews.com/2016/10/04/saffron-standing-with-sexual-assault-survivors   Make some noise and make a difference while showing your support for survivors of sexual assault by taking part in the second annual #IBelieveYou campaign. The #IBelieveYou campaign, which launched on Sept. 19, 2016, aims to promote the cultural shift of Canadians choosing to stand by victims of sexual assault rather than to minimize, shame or justify acts of sexual violence. Funded by the provincial government and supported by the Canadian Armed Forces’ Operation Honour and Albertan post-secondary institutions, the campaign was created last year by the Alberta Association of Sexual Assault Services — otherwise known as AASAS — and the organization’s 12 member agencies. One of those partners is Sherwood Park’s Saffron Sexual Assault Centre. “We have always had the mentality that it’s never the victims fault and we know that what scares a lot of people from coming forward is thinking that they are not going to be believed,” said Katie Kitschke, executive director at Saffron. Kitschke adds that Saffron’s goal is to...
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Should I Report My Assault?

Should I Report My Assault?

There was a lot of news regarding sexual assault in July after 35 women stood together to be featured in a New York magazine issue. These women have identified themselves as victims of sexual assault at the hands of a famous comedian. To some it may appear that these women just appeared from nowhere. However these women have been reporting the assaults to authorities since 2005. It took until now for everyone to take notice. Navigating the judicial system is often very difficult and the accused may not be convicted. This is one of the reasons many victims choose not to report their assault. What are some of the other reasons that victims choose not to report a sexual assault?   The perpetrator stopped before finishing the assault. The victim knows the perpetrator. The victim was/is in a relationship with the perpetrator. The victim has no visible physical injuries. The victim is worried the police won't believe them. The child/teen victim is worried about getting in trouble.   It...
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Show you CARE, help prevent sexual assault.

Show you CARE, help prevent sexual assault.

Create a distraction Do what you can to interrupt the situation. A distraction can give the person at risk a chance to get to a safe place. Jump into the conversation with a diversion like, "Let's get pizza, I'm starving," or "This party is lame. Let's try somewhere else." Ask directly Talk directly to the person who might be in trouble. Ask questions like "Who did you come here with?" or "Would you like me to stay with you?" Refer to an authority Sometimes the safest way to intervene is to refer to a neutral party with the authority to change the situation, like a security guard, bartender or college dorm RA. Seek out someone in authority and let them know about your concerns. Don't hesitate to call 911 if you are concerned for someone else's safety. Enlist others It can be intimidating to approach a situation alone. Enlist another person to step in with you. Bring a friend to talk to the person at risk, or...
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