Sexual Violence: Advocating for Effective Policies and Empowered Survivors

Friday, February 10, 2017; 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

This workshop will teach service providers how to advocate for individuals impacted by sexual victimization and how to help survivors navigate the interpersonal and systems challenges that occur in its aftermath. Dr. Alissa Ackerman will lead this all day workshop to discuss the importance of bridging the study of sex offender policy with survivor advocacy.

Modern sex crimes policies in the United States dates back to the early 1990s. These policies were developed after several highly publicized and heinous cases with the intent of keeping communities safe from dangerous and repeat sex offenders. Quickly implemented, these policies have simultaneously become harsh and broad. Do these laws protect anyone? Do they serve a purpose? Who benefits from sex crimes policies? Survivors will often say that they do not see a reflection of themselves or their stories in sex crimes policy discourse. Similarly, research to date shows that current policies actually have negative impacts on survivors of sexual trauma. This information, and the tools necessary to help survivors navigate the criminal justice process, are both crucial.

In addition to evidence-based content and skills practice, we will screen and discuss the documentary Brave Miss World, the story of Linor Abargil, who was abducted and raped in Milan, Italy two months before being crowned Miss World in 1998. The film depicts the devastating aftermath of sexual assault and also follows Linor as she goes on to become a lawyer and advocate for others.

6 CEUs available for LMHCs, LICSWs, LMFTs, and CDPs; 6 Clock Hours available for Educators

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