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Caelynn Miller-Keyes is Miss North Carolina USA 2018. She received a bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism from Virginia Commonwealth University and currently works as a mentor to young girls at Windy Gap, a Young Life camp in Weaverville. As Miss North Carolina USA she is committed to improving policies for sexual assault survivors and inspiring other survivors who want to share their experience.
Nancy Nesbitt is the parent representative on the Connecticut Governor’s Task Force on Justice for Abused Children. She applies her perspective and experiences as a mother of children who were sexually abused at a young age to her work. The task force serves to coordinate agencies in the investigation, intervention, and prosecution of child sexual abuse and serious physical abuse cases.
NPR called it the “assault epidemic no one talks about.” Each year, people with disabilities—physical, mental, intellectual, and others—face disproportionate rates of sexual and domestic violence. And too often, they do not receive the support they need.
Joyful Heart’s website now offers Spanish-language resources to make our educational materials about sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse accessible to those who speak Spanish, including the more than 40 million Spanish speakers in the United States.
At the Golden Globe Awards last month, the #MeToo movement and TIME’S UP initiative took center stage. In a visually stunning show of solidarity, attendees—both women and men —wore black eveningwear and “Time’s Up” pins. But while nearly every woman who accepted an award spoke out in support of survivors in all industries, expressed their gratitude for the silence breakers, and called for change, not one man mentioned the #MeToo or TIME’S UP movements in their acceptance speeches. Not one.
Parents who suspect their child is in an unhealthy relationship may not know how to help. Parents can begin discussing healthy relationships and signs of dating abuse with their children before they even begin dating. Here are six tips on how parents can navigate having conversations about dating violence with their children.
1. Educate yourself.
Joyful Heart launched today a new national PSA campaign, Shelved, to raise awareness about the untested rape kit backlog and engage the public in helping us solve this problem. Through this campaign, we are seeking to activate grassroots support for our work in state capitols around the country to change the way rape kits are handled, expand survivors’ rights, and ensure every single kit is tested. Every single kit, in every state.
This Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month, Joyful Heart Foundation and One Love Foundation are partnering to share information about healthy and unhealthy relationships. We will provide tips to help adults talk to young people about relationship violence, resources for you or a friend who may be in an abusive relationship, tools to support a survivor, and ways to get involved in stopping and preventing teen dating violence.
As the first of the more than 150 survivors came forward to make their statements in the sentencing hearing of Larry Nassar, a former USA Gymnastics doctor, the Joyful Heart staff was meeting with another survivor advocate from the sports world: Bridie Farrell, a nationally recognized speed skater and a survivor of childhood sexual abuse by a teammate.
At the 75th Annual Golden Globe Awards on Sunday night, dozens of women took to the stage, the red carpet, and the internet to share a message: time’s up on abuse, harassment, and assault.