Sexual Assault

SAAM Day of Action: 10 Things On My Mind

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Today is the SAAM Day of Action, and I am happy to spend it in Wyoming with a fantastic group at their Sexual Assault Summit (IX). Among the topics I’ll be teaching today: SANE Sustainability (and I’ll post a set of slides for those of you wanting them) and Effectively Using Medical Experts and Medical Evidence in Prosecuting Sexual Assault Cases. Two of my favorite sessions to deliver for sure. Since I don’t teach for a few more hours, I figured I’d take some time to give you 10 things on my mind as I do my part to honor this day:

  1. On this day, some of my closest friends have traveled to places as far flung as Atlanta, Corpus Christi, Oregon and Fargo, to talk about some aspect of sexual violence. Amazing how many related conversations are going on at events across the country today. That wasn’t the case even 10 years ago. Not to this extent, anyway.
  2. I know so many survivors.
  3. Medical professionals are partaking in these conversations at rates we’ve never seen in the past. And we’re talking collaboration, prevention and sustainability, as well as good patient care and evidence collection. Fantastic.
  4. My Facebook page sees regular updates from IAFN, NSVRC, Girls are Not for Sale, the Oregon AG’s Sexual Assault Task Force, MESA, VAWNet, Prevention Connection and more.
  5. I’m raising a girl child in a peaceful home, with a partner who cannot fathom employing violence as a tool for control or self-expression.
  6. I have been privy to the military’s embracing of this issue and am incredibly excited to see where it leads.
  7. When I teach for a room full of prosecutors, now (most of the time) more than half the people raise their hand when I ask, “How many of you have ever worked with a SANE/SAFE?”
  8. The evidence base for our work continues to grow…do a quick PubMed search and just look at how many relevant articles are out there.
  9. I have a job that lets me travel the world talking to people about these issues. And I meet incredible people everywhere I go.
  10. With the exception of literally a handful of individuals, the people closest to me are all in this line of work, as well. It’s a pretty committed crew, and I am remarkably privileged to have them in my life.

Hope it’s a good day, wherever you are in the world. Hope some day soon we no longer have a need for days like this.