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April is Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month

Two years ago we published a series on sexual assault.   It was important for us to get an in-depth understanding of not just what a sexual assault survivor goes through when processing a sexual assault; but also those who touch the lives of the survivor as they go through this very personal and traumatic experience.

To help us get a full understanding of sexual assault and its medical implications we spoke to Dr. Java Tunson from MultiCare Auburn Medical Center’s Emergency Department, Makenzy Byrum a SANE with Rapid Sexual Assault Victim Exam (SAVE) Investigation, LLC.  Detective Mark Walker of the Auburn Police Department talked to us about the investigative process related to sexual assault cases. We learned about The King County Sexual Assault Resource Center (KCSARC)  and the mental health impacts of sexual assault from KCSARC’s Clinical Manager, Larraine Lynch. And finally, Special Assault Unit prosecuting attorneys Celia Lee and Raam Wong from the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office discussed how the judicial system handles sexual assault cases.

If you did not have a chance to read the series yet, we hope you will take a moment to read the articles.

KCSARC is a vital resource not only for sexual assault survivors but for providing education and awareness in the Puget Sound region.  This year the annual Be Loud Breakfast was canceled for the first time in over 30 years. The Be Loud Breakfast is KCSARC’s largest fundraising effort.  While they were able to hold a virtual breakfast online, these resources are invaluable and anything you can donate will go a long way. (click here to donate today)

You Are Not Alone

If you or someone you know has experienced sexual assault or trauma, please know: you are not alone. There are resources that can help you heal.  The KCSARC resource line is available 24-hours a day: 1-888-99-VOICE (888-998-6423).  If you are in Pierce County, you can contact Rebuilding Hope at 1-800-756-7273 or in the local Tacoma area (253) 474-7273. You can also call the National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1.800.656.HOPE (4673).

Every 98 seconds, an American is sexually assaulted

Every 98 seconds, an American is sexually assaulted

The American Medical Association has called sexual assault the “silent, violent epidemic”

The American Medical Association has called sexual assault the “silent, violent epidemic”

43% of sexual assault survivors didn’t report because they thought nothing could be done

43% of sexual assault survivors didn’t report because they thought nothing could be done

Sexual Assault Survivors are 13 times more likely than non-crime victims to attempt suicide

Sexual Assault Survivors are 13 times more likely than non-crime victims to attempt suicide

Only about 6% of rapists will ever serve a day in jail

Only about 6% of rapists will ever serve a day in jail

One Comment

  1. Donna Foxley Donna Foxley April 15, 2020

    Thank you for an excellent article on a very sensitive and painful topic. It is so important that victims are empowered and supported as they seek to heal and move from victim to victorious. The more we stand up for those who have been violated and provide the necessary resources for them, the healthier we all will be. We can and we must break the often repetitive cycle of sexual abuse and create a successful future free from guilt or shame. For all of us who have been touched by this, thank you for shining a light in the darkness!

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