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Legislature Proclaims April 2014 as Sexual Assault Awareness Month

Resolution encourages Alaskans to speak out against sexual assault, remove the ‘veil of silence’

JUNEAU-Today, the Alaska State Legislature unanimously passed Senate Concurrent Resolution 20, sponsored by the Senate Finance Committee, which proclaims that month of April 2014 as Sexual Assault Awareness Month as part of an annual national campaign to raise public awareness about sexual assault and educate communities and individuals on how to prevent sexual violence across the nation.

“Sexual violence is a very serious public health problem that affects millions of women and men in our nation,” said Senator Kevin Meyer (R-Anchorage). “In the United States, one in five women and one in 71 men have experienced, or will experience, sexual assault during their lifetime. In Alaska, unfortunately, the rate is two-and-a-half times higher than the national average. Even worse, the statistics underestimate the problem because many victims do not tell police and they do not report it to family or friends.”

The resolution encourages Alaskans to acknowledge and speak out against sexual assault to help dispel the anger, self-blame, depression and anxiety that can be exhibited both emotionally and physically by those who have endured this terrible experience.

“All Alaskans deserve a life free from violence. In our homes, in relationships, or in our communities, every individual should live a life without fear and with security and safety,” said Senator Meyer. “This resolution emboldens Alaskans to declare that sexual assault of any kind will not be accepted.”

SCR 20 also recognizes the dedicated work in Alaska of the volunteers, staff and agencies, who dedicate their lives to ensure victims have someone to talk to, a place to go, as well as many other services to help.

“These individuals and groups deserve our respect and support and we join them in removing the veil of secrecy and silence, and declare intolerance towards the crime of sexual assault in Alaska,” said Senator Meyer.

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