Letter to the Editor

Assault, child abuse happens in small towns, too

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

April is a time to nationally raise awareness for victims and survivors of sexual assault and child abuse. Throughout April programs in Nebraska and across the country are working to increase their efforts to help raise public awareness of these violent crimes. DASAS is striving to overcome the myth that violent crimes such as these only occur in major cities. It's time to open our eyes and see that these violent crimes are occurring here in our small rural communities.

Every two minutes, someone in the United States is being sexually assaulted. As a community we must help stop these acts of violence and stand up against it. We must move away from the mentality that it was the victim's actions that caused the assault and put blame on the one who committed the crime. With less than 40 percent of sexual assaults being reported each year we as a community need to send a message that will help these victims come forward. In order to accomplish this we must understand that the victim did not prompt the attack. It does not matter a person's actions, dress, or intoxication level, sex without consent is rape. Raise awareness by standing up against sexual assault. Display a DASAS Sexual Assault Awareness poster in your place of business or home, participate in Denim Days, or wear your teal ribbon to show your support.

Child abuse like many other crimes is one we must speak out against to help stop the endangerment of children. A report of child abuse is made every ten seconds with approximately four children dying because of the abuse. Child abuse takes a toll on any child which may lead to physical, psychological, behavioral, and societal consequences. Children who experience child abuse and neglect are about nine times more likely to become involved in criminal activity. Every child deserves a safe and violent-free home. Acts of violence or neglect against children must be taken seriously and reported to the Child Abuse Hotline at 800-652-1999.

Do not be afraid to stand up against these crimes. Your support can be the difference that one individual may need. To learn more about these issues and how you can help visit our website at dasas.net or sign up for our quarterly newsletters by sending an email to das@dasas.net.

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