Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Mayor Pro Tem Alter Will Mark Sexual Assault Awareness/Prevention Month with Survivors and Advocates

AUSTIN, Texas (April 26, 2021) — Representatives from the SAFE Alliance, the Texas Association Against Sexual Assault, APD’s Victim Services Division, the City of Austin Commission for Women, and the Austin/Travis County Sexual Assault Response and Resource Team (SARRT) will gather at SAFE headquarters today alongside Mayor Pro Tem Alison Alter and several survivors and advocates. Mayor Pro Tem Alter will offer brief remarks before presenting a proclamation declaring April 2022 as Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month in Austin. The ceremony will take place at 4800 Manor Rd. inside of Building K and will begin at 2:30 sharp.
 
“Each April, we hold space for survivors and community advocates, and we reflect on the barriers to healing and justice that survivors face when they come forward,” said Mayor Pro Tem Alter. “We gather together during Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month to raise awareness of how far-reaching the impacts of sexual assault are in our community.”
 
Hanna Senko, the lead plaintiff in a recent class-action lawsuit that resulted in a settlement for fifteen survivors whose cases had been mishandled by APD, will read a statement on behalf of the plaintiffs. “Sexual violence occurs far too often, impacting each and every one of us,” said Senko. “Efforts need to remain steadfast to ensure institutions, organizations, systems, and services not only adequately support victims of sexual violence but that they also help to mitigate and prevent such events from occurring in the first place.”
 
The proclamation will be accepted by SAFE CEO Julia Spann. “Sexual assault is never the fault of the survivor,” said Spann. “SAFE provides free, confidential 24/7 forensic exams and advocacy to approximately 600 people a year. Our nurses and advocates know that the key to begin healing is to return the power and control back to the survivor.”
 
Mayor Pro Tem Alter is also sharing her hopes that Austin will become a model for other cities seeking to improve their sexual assault response systems, and reflecting on the cultural changes needed to remove the stigma associated with experiencing sexual assault. “I hope that my daughter, or maybe her daughter, will live in a time where a month dedicated to sexual assault awareness and prevention is no longer needed.”

July 4th, 2022: Independence Day Holiday Closures

  Several City of Austin offices and facilities will be closed today, Monday, July 4 in observance of Independence Day Parks and Recreation ...