April is Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention month in the City of Homestead. Councilwoman Judy Waldman took the opportunity during April’s Special Presentation Ceremony to talk about her collaborative efforts with Homestead Hospital and M.U.J.E.R. (Men and Women United in Justice, Education and Reform), to shed a light on one of the nation’s most concerning crises: sexual assault.
There to support Councilwoman Waldman’s initiative were members of S.O.S. (Start Off Smart), Baptist Hospital, and M.U.J.E.R. staff. All of these agencies have worked diligently with Councilwoman Waldman in order to bring awareness to the prevalence of sexual assault in America, and the impact that it has on victims and the community. S.O.S., an initiative of the Homestead Police Department, has been working with victims of family violence for over 24 years and M.U.J.E.R. has been working in the community for over 15 years. Through Councilwoman Waldman’s commitment to victim services and her tenacity to bring those services to our community, Baptist Hospital recently joined the collaborative and has made landmark changes for victims who are in need of medical and psychological services.
“I am so grateful to this wonderful group of caring individuals who have the desire and the compassion to help, and feel proud they allowed me the opportunity to serve alongside them. Sexual assault continues to be a major social crisis in our society and it affects every child and adult in South Dade as a victim or survivor of this terrible crime,” said Councilwoman Waldman. “We’re so fortunate to have so many people who have stepped up to this challenge to offer healing to those who so desperately need it. But it is not enough: our goal is to prevent future sexual assault via public awareness.”
Sandi Nanni, director of S.O.S., agreed with Councilwoman Waldman’s point, stating some alarming facts about sexual assault in the country: every 107 seconds an American is sexually assaulted and 44% of victims are under 18. But through partnerships and awareness campaigns, there is hope. “It’s through the work of Councilwoman Waldman that we make strides in this battle. Homestead is in the forefront of providing support and understanding for victims and survivors of sexual assault.”
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For immediate assistance for victims of sexual assault, call the 24 hour M.U.J.E.R. hotline:305 763 2459