Sexual Assault

Awareness Month

The nation recognizes April as Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM). SAAM aims to raise public awareness about sexual violence and communicate to members of the community what services are available to survivors.  This is the 17th year of Sexual Assault Awareness Month and this year’s national theme is “Embrace Your Voice.”  The focus is to inform individuals on how they can use their words to promote safety, respect, and equality to help stop sexual violence before it happens.  And it also educates communities on how they can embrace their voices to show their support for survivors, as well as take a stand against victim blaming and hurtful misconceptions.
We know that one month cannot solve the serious and pervasive issue of sexual violence; however, SAAM generates an opportunity to strengthen and magnify prevention endeavors throughout the year. The good news is that prevention is possible, and it’s happening. Individuals, communities, and the private sector are already successfully combating the risk of sexual violence through conversations, programs, policies, and research-based tools that promote safety, respect, and equality. By promoting safe behaviors, thoughtful policies, and healthy relationships, we can create safe and equitable communities where every person is treated with respect.” (National Sexual Violence Resource Center.) Our country stands at a turning point with the media focused on this very important issue. Many victims have come forward publicly, and we have an extraordinary opportunity to increase awareness and change behaviors. The time to unite communities to combat sexual violence is now.
Several awareness events are planned in Jackson County during April and we invite the community to join us as we seek to bring attention to this issue that pervades our county. Many of our events are related to “Jeans 4 Justice” which began in 1999 when a judge overturned a rape conviction because the victim was wearing jeans at the time of the assault. The judge said it was common knowledge that jeans can’t be forcibly removed. Global protests followed, and since then, thousands of people have worn jeans to work to help raise awareness of sexual assault.
Opportunities for you to “Embrace Your Voice”:
•Month of April - businesses can participate in “Jeans 4 Justice”.  Contact Crisis Services Jackson County Office for forms.  Donate $1 and wear jeans to work to bring awareness to SAAM, as well as raise funds for sexual assault victim’s services.
•Tuesday, April 3rd is National Wear Teal Day to support survivors. Teal is the official color of SAAM throughout the month. By wearing teal, supporters can promote further awareness of sexual violence, prevention and the importance of respecting and supporting survivors.
•Thursday, April 5th @ 11:30 at City Hall, the mayor will be signing a declaration of April as Sexual Assault Awareness Month and we will be hosting a short ceremony, Flowers for Survivors.  There will be a short dedication to honor survivors from Jackson County with Linda Bray as our speaker and the planters and flowers were provided by Family Life Center, Inc. and Jackson County Drug Court.  
•April 13th - “Jeans 4 Justice” Art Project jeans are due. Groups, individuals and businesses are all invited to participate. Decorate an old pair of jeans with affirming messages in support of survivors. These jeans will be displayed at the courthouse April 16th – 20th and also are available for display at your business.  Please contact our office to submit your jeans by April 13th.
•April 21st–Crisis Services will have a booth at Market on the Square. We will display jeans from the art project, distribute brochures and general information about Crisis Services, and be available for questions and information and we hope you will stop by our booth.
Crisis Services Jackson County Office serves residents of Jackson County who are in crisis due to domestic violence or sexual violence. For more information or assistance, please call Crisis Services Jackson County Office at 256-574-5826 or our 24 hour HELPline at 256-716-1000.  

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Upcoming Events

22 Apr 2019
11:00AM - 01:00PM
NARFE meeting
26 Apr 2019
07:00PM -
IMPACT Low Country Luau
27 Apr 2019
08:00AM - 01:00PM
Jackson County Master Gardeners Plant Sale
29 Apr 2019
10:00AM -
NACC Awards Day
30 Apr 2019
05:00PM - 07:00PM
Jackson County Master Gardeners tomato workshop

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