April is “Sexual Assault Awareness” Month

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, the one month Bill Cosby, Harvey Weinstein (sentenced to 23 years in prison for rape and sexual assault when his dirty deems were revealed thanks to the #metoo movement) and numerous other men, seem to be unaware of. Sexual assault–which ranges from verbal sexual harassment to rape is a serious problem. What it IS and What it is NOT, defined by law varies.

“Sexual assault is any act that invades an individual’s sexual privacy. Sexual assault may range from verbal obscenities to rape. It is an act of power and control over the victim. Sexual assault is a crime of violence because the victim is subjected to the aggression of the assailant. It is not a crime of sex.”Avalon Sexual Assault Center

sexual assault infographic

Infographic on Sexual Assault From National Sexual Violence Resource Center

While sexual assault affects every gender, age and ethic group, students on college campuses can especially become targets.

President Obama launched the It’s on Us campaign in Sept, 2014 to end sexual assault on campus, and said that “an estimated one in five women has been sexually assaulted during her college years. Of those assaults,” he noted, “only 12 % are reported. To work so hard to make it through the college gates to be assaulted is an affront to our basic humanity.”

The campaign says its on us–all of us, to stop sexual assault. Here are a few tips on what you can do to be a part of the solution:

1. Talk to your friends honestly and openly about sexual assault.

2. Don’t just be a bystander–if you see something, intervene in any way you can.

3. Trust your gut. If something looks like it might be a bad situation, it probably is.

4. Be direct. Ask someone who looks like they may need help if they’re okay.

5. Get someone to help if you see something–enlist a friend, RA, bartender, or host to help step in.

6. Keep an eye on someone who has had too much to drink.

7. If you see someone who is too intoxicated to consent, enlist their friends to help leave them safely.

8. Recognize the potential danger of someone who talks about planning to target another person at a party.

9. Be aware if someone is deliberately trying to intoxicate, isolate, or corner someone else.

10. Get in the way by creating a distraction, drawing attention to the situation, or separating them.

11. Understand that if someone does not or cannot consent to sex, it’s rape.

12. Never blame the victim.

“As we raise the next generation of men, we teach them that they must treat women with respect. We stand up for ourselves and react as immediately as we can to unacceptable behavior. We help each other, women and men, define what unacceptable behavior is, we learn to recognize it without having to debate it. We call it out early and often, and loudly. We stand tall and proud as we look predators in the eye and name their behavior, indicating that we will not be silenced or pretend there is an alternative explanation. We bring lawsuits. We speak up. We forgive ourselves. We heal, and we slowly change the culture from one of prey and predators to one of consent and equality.”–Dr. Ava Cadell “#MeToo”

Featured image from -https://www.nsvrc.org/saam/graphics

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Anka Radakovich is a legendary Sex Columnist, Certified Sexologist, Sex Educator, Screenwriter, and Author of the book THE WILD GIRLS CLUB, PART 2, Tales from New York to Hollywood. THE WILD GIRLS CLUB, Part 2 is her third book. Her first two books, The Wild Girls Club; Tales from below the Belt, and Sexplorations; Journeys to the Erogenous Frontier were both published by Crown/Random House. She was the Sex Columnist for DETAILS Magazine for 9 years and currently writes columns for Brides.com and Los Angeles Magazine. Her writing has appeared in dozens of magazines including Marie Claire, Women’s Health, Men’s Health, Harper’s Bazaar, Cosmopolitan, Redbook, Men's Journal, Seventeen, Glamour, and Maxim. She has appeared on numerous television shows including 8 appearances with Conan O’Brien. She was a Jeopardy question under the category “Men’s Mags.” As a Sex Educator and Sexologist, she is a college lecturer at Universities throughout the country who offers her unique brand of sex education. Follow her on Twitter @ankarad.


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