November 25, 2016
Since 1969 Center for Community Solutions has worked with individuals affected by domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking. We provide comprehensive prevention and intervention services that include a 24-hour bilingual crisis hotline, emergency shelters, counseling services, legal services, court and hospital accompaniment, advocacy and support services and a robust prevention and education outreach efforts. CCS operates the only Rape Crisis Center in San Diego and in the past year, we helped over 10,000 individuals.
During the past year, sexual assault discussions have been in the forefront like I have never seen in my 30 years of working with survivors. During this time there was outrage at a judge and a father for minimizing the impact of an assault on the survivor while they both underscored the impact on the perpetrator.
During this time good men stood up to say, “Not in any locker room I have been in or anywhere else is language that shames, humiliates, blames and oppresses survivors okay.” Healthy, responsible young boys and men have been gathering their collective voice to say this is not okay and it must be stopped. Silent bystanders can soon be a thing of the past. The time is near that sexual assault survivors may not have to be re-victimized by comments that are crude and clearly objectifying a survivor.
According to the Department of Justice’s National Crime Victimization Survey, out of every 1000 rapes committed, 994 people walk free without a conviction. This has everything to do with us holding the survivor accountable for their own victimization as opposed to the predator. Questions like “What was she wearing?” or “What was she drinking?” contribute to victim blaming. Men with healthy communication and boundaries are helping to change the tide. This violence is preventable if we work together in building healthy communication, respecting healthy boundaries, and mitigating the overarching oppression fueled by racism, sexism, and homophobia.
If you or someone you know has been affected by sexual assault, domestic violence or stalking, Center for Community Solutions (CCS) is here around the clock for survivors – responding to the hospital when law enforcement calls, and providing legal and counseling services that support the unique healing process of each survivor when needed. CCS is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by our toll-free crisis line for individuals and families to be able to reach out anonymously any time of day. CCS has emergency shelters for survivors and their families where they can find safety and comfort as they begin to rebuild their lives.
CCS has also been expanding our prevention and education activities to do our part to get on the front end of this violence. We are utilizing best practice and researched – based curriculum that can change the conversation and stop this preventable violence.
As we recognize November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, let’s remember that there is a place for everyone to be part of the solution to end this violence. Reach out, speak up, and join our team at CCS – by making a donation or through your gifts of time. www.ccssd.org