Take a Moment to Send a Message to a Survivor of Sexual Violence Behind Bars

By Kjerstin Johnson, Bitch Media
December 14, 2012

Just Detention is a Los Angeles-based organization working to end sexual violence in detention facilities. Last year, they sent over 1,700 messages of hope (including ones from Bitch Media readers) to survivors of sexual abuse and violence in prison.

This year, they're sending even more. From Just Detention:

Every day, Just Detention International hears from survivors of sexual abuse who are behind bars and struggling to heal. This holiday season, you can give a survivor some hope by sending a personal message to remind them that they have not been forgotten.

Here’s how it works:
1) Submit your message below (in 140 characters or less)
2) We’ll pass on your message to a survivor in time for the holidays
3) Someone’s life is changed forever because of YOU

Click here to send your message. Even a short message can mean the world when you are behind bars. Make sure you send it by Tuesday!

Just Detention says "Cases of sexual abuse in detention are not rare, isolated incidents, but the result of a systemic failure to protect the safety of inmates." This year, some measure of systemic accountability finally occurred: The Department of Justice finally updated their standards of the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) -- an act that was passed almost a decade ago.

Now, PREA standards apply to all federal confinement facilities and several agencies including the Department of Homeland Security. Some PREA regulations include banning routine pat-down searches of female adult inmates by male staff; stronger protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender inmates; youth in adult facilities will no longer be detained in housing units with adults; and a facility audit by independent auditors every three years. Read more about PREA here.

It's only one small victory in a sea of gross abuse in the prison industrial complex. Add one more drop with your note -- it makes a huge difference.

Send your message today!

Original post: http://bitchmagazine.org/post/send-a-card-to-an-incarcerated-survivor-of-sexual-abuse