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April’s Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) raises sexual violence awareness, education and prevention efforts through community events, symbols, education and fundraising; plus, examining ‘consent culture’

Media Contact: Barbara M. Fornasiero, EAFocus Communications; barbara@eafocus.com; 248.260.8466

Mount Clemens, Mich.—April 1, 2022—Turning Point, an agency providing services to empower survivors of domestic and sexual violence, is joining the national observation of April as Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM). SAAM is an annual campaign to raise awareness about sexual violence that educates communities and individuals on its pervasiveness while offering support, advocacy and education on preventive measures.  Turning Point President and CEO, Sharman Davenport, Ph.D., noted the importance of providing help to survivors of sexual violence.

“Sexual violence is the ultimate violation and degradation of an individual. It is a life-altering event that no one ever forgets, and its effects are deeply embedded, impacting the life choices of those who survive it,” Davenport said. “It can lead to short and long-term physical and mental health problems and negatively affect families and communities. In 2021 alone, Turning Point responded to 9,000 calls from victims of domestic and sexual violence and those who support them through the trauma. The need for outreach, advocacy and prevention education is tremendous.”

According to the National Sexual Assault Hotline, someone is sexually assaulted in the United States every 68 seconds. Turning Point supports survivors of sexual violence as well as their loved ones along their entire healing journey.

“Everyone deserves to live in a safe society; to create such an environment, we must embrace survivors and express our belief in their experiences and our compassion for the cruel treatment they suffered,” Davenport said. “Continuous education is needed to confront and diffuse victim-blaming, sexist language, and behaviors that promote violence. We must take a stand and refocus the responsibility and accountability on the individuals who commit these violent acts, as well as empower those at risk.”

Among its many activities for SAAM, Turning Point is hosting a Take Back the Night (TBTN) event on April 7. The rally and speak-out gathering is an open forum to express feelings about sexual violence and show support and solidarity for survivors.

Also, an evening presentation on Consent Culture will take place Wednesday, April 20, at the Turning Point office in Mt. Clemens. In order to create happier, healthier relationships and prevent violence, the concept of expanding knowledge of consent beyond sexual encounters will be explored. Looking at consent as a cultural norm with practical examples and skill development, participants will walk away with strategies to create a consent culture.

Summary of April Awareness Dates:

  • April 5Wear Teal Day: Show your support for survivors of sexual harassment and abuse by wearing teal — the color of sexual violence prevention and also a color embedded in the Turning Point logo.
  • April 7 – Take Back The Night (TBTN) at Recreational Authority of Roseville and Eastpointe with a march, rally, survivor speak-out, and sharing of community resources to prevent sexual violence and empower survivors.
  • April 20Consent Culture presentation at the Turning Point office in Mt. Clemens, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • April 27Denim Day – The day is dedicated to wearing jeans with a purpose – to support survivors and educate oneself about all forms of sexual violence.
  • April 29 – Turning Point’s Stepping Out with the Stars fundraising gala

Detailed information, including registration, about all events occurring in April to raise awareness, educate and inform community members about sexual violence can be found on the Turning Point website https://turningpointmacomb.org/calendar/.

About Turning Point 

Turning Point provides comprehensive, free, and confidential programs for domestic violence and sexual assault survivors, their loved ones, and the community. Services include a 24-hour hotline, emergency shelter, housing, trauma advocacy/counseling, personal protection order assistance, legal advocacy, forensic nurse exams, first response advocacy, prevention, and community education. Second Hand Rose, another Turning Point service, provides survivors with gently used items while providing an opportunity for the community to donate and shop. Serving Metro Detroit for 41 years, Turning Point has helped over 100,000 survivors. Visit www.turningpointmacomb.org for more information.