A group of sexual assault survivor advocates has begun a campaign called Report IT Now! The idea behind it is to empower sexual assault survivors to break their silence while raising awareness about the huge number of sexual assault cases that occur in this country and go unreported. It’s also about something I’ve brought up a lot, lately — the way that the legal system routinely revictimizes those survivors who do come forward.
If you have been sexually assaulted, please consider filling out this form. You may also fill it out for another person if they are unable to do so themselves (i.e. the survivor is disabled, a child, or no longer living). This is not a police report. But if you’d like to make a legal report, the campaign will forward your report to law enforcement officials. Any sexual assault can be reported, regardless of type, severity, or how long ago the assault occurred. Survivors of every gender may report. Though the campaign is very clearly geared towards Americans, there is absolutely nothing on the form that prevents a person of any other nationality from using it to report. Though they will ask for your name, you can choose to not provide it. Regardless of whether or not you choose to provide your name, your report will be used for survey purposes only and your personal information will be kept confidential.
On April 29th, the statistical information gathered from the reports will be used as a part of the protests outside of courthouses around the country for Angela Shelton Day.
I strongly encourage any survivors out there to report. I did so myself, yesterday, and I can’t say that it was fun. In fact, it was pretty difficult. But it was also therapeutic. And I’m glad that I did it.
The campaign has been put together as a collaboration between PAVE and Angela Shelton. If you’ve never heard of Angela Shelton, check out this page about her book and film. (At first I was puzzled, thinking that she was just the most self-absorbed activist in the world who decided to name a day after herself. I assure you that it’s is far more interesting than that.) Thanks to Holly at Menstrual Poetry for the head’s up.
Report IT and spread the word!