As the fallout continues from the Penn State child sexual abuse allegations, we are reminded of the devastation and magnitude of the resulting consequences of these crimes.
These incidents highlight the fact that as community members we are accountable in educating others to identify abuse and protect our most vulnerable populations, especially our children. We must learn to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to the realities of child sexual abuse.
A child’s safety is an adult’s responsibility. We cannot rely on children to protect themselves, and we must not ignore our suspicions, but act on them if we suspect abuse is happening.
This is one of the many reasons why it is imperative to prioritize funding for sexual assault victims. Treatment for victims and communities is essential to healing and creating a better Washington.
The state is encountering significant financial challenges that are putting funding for sexual assault services at risk. Funding cuts to our sexual assault programs in Washington state are unacceptable. Almost 60 percent of victims who receive these vital services are children.
Protect our children and their families. Tell your legislators: No cuts to sexual assault funding for victims.
(Walsh is development and marketing manager for HopeSparks.)