Now, the good news
All month, you’ve helped raise awareness about sexual abuse behind bars. Now, as Sexual Assault Awareness Month comes to a close, help us share this inspiring fact on Facebook and Twitter:
Jason Effman is a prison official in New York State. His job is to bring the state’s prisons into compliance with the new national standards to end sexual abuse behind bars. Recently, Jason learned that an inmate in one of the men’s prisons was sexually abused by other inmates. The survivor was traumatized by the assault -- things had gotten so bad that he was contemplating suicide. Jason immediately responded to the survivor’s request for help, and began working with a local organization to bring a trained counselor into the prison to help him heal.
But Jason’s job is about more than helping individual survivors. Every day, he uses what he learns from survivors’ experiences to create better, more effective policies for his entire state. In a letter to the man who survived the assault, Jason wrote: “Your letter describes the struggles you have faced finding help during this difficult time. This will help shape our policies and staff education as we continue to move forward.”
We can stop prisoner rape -- and we will. We know this because, just ten years ago, it would have been unthinkable for a corrections official to bring in an outside counselor to provide services to an incarcerated survivor.
Today, there are more and more people like Jason -- committed corrections officials who are using the national standards as a tool to improve safety in their facilities and get incarcerated survivors the help they need.
There are also more and more people like you -- people who have the courage and compassion to stand up for every person’s right to be treated with dignity.
Please share this image on Facebook and Twitter, and make sure your friends know that this is a crisis we can end.