February 2011
Sen. Scott Brown Reveals Sexual Assault
Sen. Scott Brown

Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) this week revealed that he was sexually assaulted as a child. In a 60 Minutes interview, Brown talked about his experience being assaulted several times by a camp counselor when he was about 10 years old. Brown said the counselor threatened to kill him if he ever told anyone.

About one out of every ten sexual assault victims are male, and more than three million men have been sexually assaulted, according to Justice Department statistics.

The revelation by Brown, elected last year to fill Sen. Ted Kennedy's seat, led to intense media coverage of the issue and, in particular, male victims. RAINN spokesperson Katherine Hull appeared on ABC's World News with Diane Sawyer and Good Morning America and spoke about male survivors: "Sexual assault and sexual abuse victims, in particular male victims, often feel intense feelings of guilt and shame and fear."

Brown's disclosure is expected to lead many men to reach out for help for the first time. "Hearing someone as prominent and respected as Sen. Brown talk about his own assault will make it easier for other men to ask for help," said Jennifer Marsh, director of RAINN's National Sexual Assault Hotlines. "Our staff already helps thousands of men each year, and I expect that number to grow following this news."

Watch Sen. Brown on 60 Minutes

General Hospital Breaks Ground with Male Storyline

General HospitalIn a recent episode of ABC's long-running General Hospital, a male character disclosed he had been raped — a first for daytime television. While GH character Michael Corinthos (played by actor Chad Duell) has been experiencing the devastating emotional effects of the assault on the show for months, he finally revealed to his loved ones that he was sexually assaulted in prison and was unable to deal with the trauma alone.

In conjunction with this episode, General Hospital aired a public service ad with actors Chad Duell and Andrea Bogart. The spot encouraged viewers to get help and support through the National Sexual Assault Hotline and the Online Hotline; thanks to the PSA, the number of people who got help through RAINN's hotlines doubled that day.

Watch General Hospital's RAINN PSA

RAINN Reaches Out to Teens Experiencing Sexual Violence in Dating

National Teed Dating Violence and Prevention MonthFebruary is National Teen Dating Violence and Prevention Month, and RAINN has been working to increase awareness about the prevalence of sexual violence in teen dating. In fact, 28% of all sexual assaults are perpetrated by an intimate partner. Furthermore, girls aged 16-19 are four times more likely than the general population to be victims of sexual violence.

If you or a teen you know needs help, please contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-HOPE or the Online Hotline.

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KaDee Strickland Co-Hosts The View

The ViewWhile guest co-hosting The View earlier this month KaDee Strickland talked about her role as Dr. Charlotte King, whose character was raped on a recent episode of ABC's Private Practice. Strickland and Private Practice's writers worked closely with RAINN to create an accurate portrayal of the crime, including the aftermath and long-term mental health effects of rape.

Strickland recently joined RAINN's National Leadership Council and is helping the organization educate the public and pass crucial new federal legislation such as the SAFER Act. On The View, she emphasized that victims of sexual violence have reason to be hopeful: "There is hope, and there is happiness that can come out of a person's story."

Watch KaDee Stricland Co-Hosting The View

Four Quick Ways to Educate Your
Community in April

SAAMApril is Sexual Assault Awareness & Prevention Month. Here are four quick ways to help RAINN educate your friends.

  1. Friend RAINN on Facebook.
  2. Add a RAINN banner to your blvog or Facebook page.
  3. Re-tweet RAINNs safety messages.
  4. Organize a small event to raise money for the National Sexual Assault Hotline.

Here are more ways to help RAINN and make your community safer.

 RAINN in the News

ABC NewsABC News
"I was pleasantly surprised that there were a lot more men coming forward. At first, it was very difficult to talk about it publicly... But it's been one of the best things I've ever done. I'm helping to change people's lives."
—Eugene Brooks, RAINN Speakers Bureau Member

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Access HollywoodAccess Hollywood
"Our thoughts are with Lara and her family during this difficult time. We applaud Lara's courageousness and strength. It's without a doubt that she will be an inspiration to countless others as they recover from this devastating crime."
—Katherine Hull, RAINN spokesperson, on the sexual assault of CBS correspondent Lara Logan in Cairo

TV GuideTV Guide
"We're doing all the proper research and handling the aftermath as responsibly as possible. We've been working closely with the organization RAINN and we will be doing a PSA at the end of the episode."
General Hospital's Emmy-winning head writer, Bob Guza

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Perez HiltonPerez Hilton
"Rape is an awful thing to happen to anyone, but being that Chad's character is so young (a high school senior) just makes it that much worse. However, we were happy to hear that this story line was consulted up with RAINN and that a PSA will be airing at the end of the episode."
—Perez Hilton on General Hospital's partnership with RAINN

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"It comes down to empowerment. The best thing we can do is to empower back the victims."
—RAINN spokesperson Katherine Hull talking about Lara Logan

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A Birthday Wish for RAINN

CausesAre you looking for a way for family and friends to celebrate your birthday — and help a cause dear to you? Birthday Wish is the answer. It's simple: it takes just three minutes to set up. Then, with one click, friends and family can donate to RAINN in your honor.

  • Your birthday wish can be big or small. A gift of just $10 will support the National Sexual Assault Hotline and help someone begin recovering from sexual assault.

    Start Your Birthday Wish Now

  • Grammy Nominee Betty Wright Sings for RAINN

    Betty Wright

    "The importance of RAINN is beyond words," says soul and R&B artist Betty Wright. That's why she decided to use her 2011 Grammy-nominated song, "Go!", to raise funds and awareness for RAINN.

    "RAINN is an advocate for those victims who are sexually abused. They are the nation's largest anti-sexual assault organization," says Wright. "Domestic violence can lead to other forms of abuse including sexual assault and I believe it is just as important, if not more so, to provide guidance and support for those victims. I believe hurt people hurt other people, so we want to rid the planet of this disease before it effects the next generation."

    Spotlight on the Speakers Bureau: Erin Merryn

    Erin Merryn

    RAINN Speakers Bureau member Erin Merryn has a personal story so touching that it led Illinois state legislators to cry — and then to take action, according to the Daily Herald. Merryn's testimony about her own abuse led to the passage of "Erin's Law," signed this month by Gov. Pat Quinn, which requires that Illinois schoolchildren be educated about sexual abuse.

    Merryn testified that she developed Erin's Law "because no one was giving me the messages on how to speak up about sexual abuse, on what safe touch is, or how to put a face and voice on this. I stayed silent and listened to my perpetrators."

    Merryn also appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show, where she shared the story of her abuse, her survival, and her goal of educating children about "how to get away and how to tell today."

    Learn More About Becoming A Member of RAINN's Speakers Bureau

    Volunteer Spotlight: Katie Franklin
    Katie Franklin"I've talked to some truly amazing people while working on the Online Hotline, people with strength and resolve who want to get help and just need someone to push them in the right direction. Some are lost or scared and need someone to guide them."

    Learn More About Volunteering for RAINN

    Join @RAINN01 on Twitter

    TwitterWant to stay updated about RAINN news and events and fun ways to get involved? Start following RAINN on Twitter today. You can also spread the word by re-tweeting our posts and encouraging your friends to follow RAINN.

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