FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 8, 2009

Contact: Sopheak Tek

tek@sisterslead.org

MOVIE “PRECIOUS” MAY CAUSE SURVIVORS TO RELIVE THEIR CHILDHOOD SEXUAL ASSAULT 

Congress sent President Barack Obama legislation Thursday renewing a soon to expire program that helps local governments cut their backlogs of unexamined DNA evidence in rape cases.

The program, which was backed by Vice President Joe Biden and Attorney General Eric Holder, provides federal grants to state and local law enforcement agencies so they can speed their analyses of untested evidence kits. Experts say many thousands of such kits are languishing in communities around the country, including some that are many years old.

 

The White House will launch an ambitious branding campaign Friday aimed at ending sexual assaults on college campuses, in part by enlisting the support of major college sports leagues and prominent celebrities.

Entitled "It's On Us," the initiative aims to shift the culture in which rape is socially acceptable at colleges and universities, White House officials said. One in five women will be sexually assaulted while in college, according to studies, many of them during their first year by someone they know.

 

The NFL is establishing partnerships with groups that work to prevent domestic abuse and will have its players, coaches and executives undergo an educational program about domestic violence, according to a memo sent from Commissioner Roger Goodell to teams.

“These are by no means final steps,” Goodell wrote in the memo, which was sent to NFL teams Thursday. “We will continue to work with experts to expand and develop long-term programs that raise awareness, educate, and prevent domestic violence and sexual assault both within the NFL and in our society in general.”

 

NOTE: This article contains disturbing content that may be triggering for some readers.

 

In the tight-knit communities of the far north, there are no roads, no police officers—and higher rates of sexual assault than anywhere else in the United States.

 

To read full article, visit this Atlantic link.

MOUNT DORA -- Three families of deaf children are filing lawsuits, claiming their children were neglected and abused at a Mt. Dora school.

The allegations range from sexual abuse to malnutrition.

Ninety-nine times in the past decade, the Department of Children and Families has launched investigations at the National Deaf Academy in Mt. Dora, also known as NDA Behavioral Health Systems.

 

In what many might see as typical Pentagon fashion, the Department of Defense concluded in 2010 that “most active-duty members receive effective training on sexual assault.”

But a new University of Michigan study suggests otherwise. It raises questions about the effectiveness of the military’s efforts at sexual assault prevention and awareness.

 

To read full article, visit this Minneapolis Star Tribune link.

NOTE: This article contains disturbing content that may be triggering for some readers.

Sexual assault is alarmingly common in the U.S. military, and more than half of the victims are men. According to the Pentagon, thirty-eight military men are sexually assaulted every single day. These are the stories you never hear—because the culprits almost always go free, the survivors rarely speak, and no one in the military or Congress has done enough to stop it.

 

The degree to which traffickers use violence as part of a structured business strategy surprised researchers who on Wednesday are releasing a preliminary study of the business strategy behind the juvenile sex trade in Minneapolis.

Funded by the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota and the University of Minnesota Children, Youth & Family Consortium, researchers examined nearly six years of Minneapolis police and Hennepin County district court records, looked at seven years of media reports and interviewed 89 people who work directly with victims.

 

U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., called on the Senate Tuesday to act on legislation that some believe will make it harder for sexual predators to get jobs in schools.

Toomey's bill -- the Protecting Students from Sexual and Violent Predators Act -- passed unanimously last October in the House, but has stalled in the Senate.

 

To read full article, visit this Pennlive link.

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