April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month

(Source: WSFA 12 News)
(Source: WSFA 12 News)

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and there are plenty of ways for you to get involved.

When it comes to sexual assault the victims are both women and men. Statistics show one in four women will be a victim at some point in their life.

"It's very important to bring awareness so we can prevent further abuse from happening," said Ce Anderson with the Samaritan Counseling Center. "For those who've been abused, they can get proper care and counseling to help them live productive and less traumatized lives."

There are some warning signs that someone is being abused. Victims may show signs of isolation, depression, missing work, or new chronic health issues. There are some things you can do if you know someone in this situation.

"I would recommend talking to the individual and letting them know you're not judging them. You're their support and shoulder to lean on. Really tune into what they would like to accomplish and not pressure them into reporting it. Maybe counseling could be the first stop."

You can join in the effort to raise awareness. There is a "Take Back the Night" rally on the step of the Capitol building on April 11th at 4:30 p.m. The goal is to show victims they are not alone and let lawmakers know more funding is needed to fight this crime.

If you or someone you know is a victim of sexual assault you can get help by calling 211, or 1-800-656-HOPE, or contacting the Samaritan Counseling Center. ?

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