Members of the public and representatives from various community and government agencies were on hand Wednesday, February 20, 2008 to help welcome Kingston and Frontenac County’s new Sexual Assault Protocol. The formal launch took place at Memorial Hall, located in Kingston City Hall.
Kim Allen, Executive Director of the Sexual Assault Centre Kingston notes, “In Ontario, one in four women, and one in six men are sexually assaulted in their lifetime. According to Statistics Canada, 133,170 children were born in Ontario during 2005 and 2006. Twenty thousand of those children will be sexually abused before the age of 18. Chances are, someone close to you is a survivor of sexual violence, whether you know it or not.”
The creation of the Sexual Assault Protocol is a major step in the struggle against sexual assault. It lays down the groundwork for a comprehensive and standardized community response to sexual violence. Increasing cooperation among victim service providers improves the overall quality of help available to survivors of sexual assault.
In addition, it is anticipated that having a formal coordinated response in place will encourage more victims to come forward and report sexual assaults. This, in turn, will strengthen prevention, education and healing efforts from within the community.
The Protocol was developed collaboratively by the Sexual Assault Emergency Committee, comprising representatives of various social services, justice, health care, and educational organizations throughout Kingston and Frontenac County.