Sexual violence prevention discussed at meeting

The meeting discussed the importance of education and support services for sexual abuse victims.

The power of conversation: Pictured are (from left) Women Organized Against Rape Education Specialist LaQuisha Anthony, Sen. Christine M. Tartaglione and Rep. Jason Dawkins.

State Sen. Christine M. Tartaglione last week partnered with state Rep. Jason Dawkins and the Philadelphia-based Women Organized Against Rape to facilitate a discussion about sexual violence prevention.

About 40 women and men, including numerous sexual violence survivors, joined the legislators at the Wissinoming Park recreation center for Conversations That Matter, a presentation by WOAR education specialist LaQuisha Anthony.

“The first step in stopping sexual violence is recognizing and acknowledging the true prevalence of the problem,” Tartaglione said. “Then we must educate everyone — women, men, parents, children and young adults — about the resources available to them through victim advocacy organizations like Women Organized Against Rape.”

Dawkins urged attendees to continue their discussion of sexual violence prevention.

“October is awareness month but it has to be a topic 12 months, 365 days a year,” he said. “I think this is the start of a very powerful discussion and hope you all go out and share what you heard tonight.”

WOAR offers a 24-hour crisis response hotline at 215–985–3333 and partners with the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape to operate a rape crisis center at 300 E. Hunting Park Ave.

For information about all WOAR programs, call 215–985–3315 or visit ••