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RAINN
 
Freedom Fighter of the Month

RAINN

August s Freedom Fighters of the Month are the members of the organization Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN).

The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) is one of those organizations. RAINN seeks to aid and support victims of sexual assault. They primarily do this through their confidential, 24-hour National Sexual Assault Hotline-1-800-656-HOPE. The hotline can also direct victims to the nearest rape crisis and treatment centers for help.

RAINN also seeks to educate the public about sexual assault and support public policies that aid victims and bring rapists to justice.

We asked RAINN a few questions about what people can do about rape in our society.

What specific laws or policies do you endorse to oppose rape?

  • Eliminate your states statute of limitation for prosecuting rape and/or sexual assault when there is DNA evidence available -- About 1/2 of all states have a DNA exception in their law. The others should be encouraged to adopt one.
  • Support the elimination of the DNA backlog. -- DNA evidence from about 350,000 rapes and murders (mostly rapes) is sitting on police shelves awaiting analysis because police departments can t afford to process the evidence. Support the legislative plans to fund the analysis.
  • Push for the creation of a SART program in your community 9 Sexual Assault Response Teams are teams of counselors, nurses, cops and prosecutors with special training to compassionately help victims and expertly handle forensic evidence.
What can people do to try to alter our culture, which seems to tolerate rape?
  • Support women who speak up about rape. Be there, listen, dont be judgmental.
  • Take a vocal stand at home, school, sporting events, places of worship, etc., opposing violence against women.
  • Challenge attitudes, language and jokes that degrade women and girls.
  • Demonstrate positive behavior to boys and girls, relatives and friends.
  • Talk to children about violence and how to treat others with respect.
  • Tell other men to respect women as their equals.
  • Recognize and educate others that being a "man" does not involve degrading or abusing girls and women.
What can men do to stop rape?
  • Communicate clearly with your partner(s) about sex and do not make assumptions.
  • Know your limits and remain within them with respect to alcohol and/or drugs.
  • Remember that no means no .
  • Support organizations like the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network which are working to end sexual assault.
If you, or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, you can get help by contacting RAINN at RAINN.org or by calling their hotline, 1-800-656-HOPE. If you live outside of the United States, you can find a listing of international sexual assault resources here.