RAINN Launches New Best Practices Certification Program

New guidelines will help organizations address important issues; Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. is first corporation to earn compliance certification

(September 18, 2015)RAINN, the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization, has launched the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Best Practices Standards, a new program designed to help companies and organizations achieve safety standards and improve the way that they prevent and respond to sexual violence.

RAINN’s experts created the standards based on their knowledge of best practices in sexual assault prevention, public education and victim services.

“Sexual violence is a serious crime and we are committed to doing everything in our power to ensure it is eradicated,” said Scott Berkowitz, president and founder of RAINN. “We are confident these standards will provide a benchmark for institutions and companies to measure against as they take their own steps to reduce the number of sexual assaults and provide a high level of care for survivors.”

RAINN is in the process of developing standards that will be customized for a variety of sectors. The program will be available for a diverse range of industries including travel and tourism, secondary and higher education, youth services, ground transportation and religious organizations.

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE: RCL) is the first corporation to earn certification for compliance under the new standards. Earlier this year, representatives from RAINN conducted a comprehensive analysis of Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, and Azamara Club Cruises ships and performed an intensive review of Royal Caribbean’s policies, procedures, and training. The review included a close examination of 11 key areas ranging from physical ship security to crew training and victim care services. After measuring the quality and thoroughness of Royal Caribbean’s approach to sexual assault prevention and response, RAINN granted the global cruise company compliance certification for its Cruise Line Best Practice Standards.

“Nothing is more important to us than the safety and security of our guests and crew,” said Richard D. Fain, Chairman and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. “We set high standards for ourselves – and on the most important subjects, we look to experts for guidance. RAINN’s evaluation was complete and thorough, and we take pride in reaching the standards they set for certification.”

“The subject of sexual assault prevention presents a challenge for all kinds of organizations, and RAINN’s new standards offer a clear path forward for dealing with the topic, “ Fain added.

The standards for RCL’s certification were created specifically for the cruise industry and take into account requirements under the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act (CVSSA) and other applicable laws, as well as crime prevention and response issues that are specific to the cruise line industry.

RAINN works with organizations to provide certifications based on industry-specific standards. Through a comprehensive two-step process, RAINN reviews written policies and protocols, followed by a site audit, operations review, and employee interviews. RAINN has more than 20 years of experience in victim services, public education, and public policy. The Best Practice Standards are designed to reduce instances of sexual violence and ensure a coordinated, victim-centered response, should sexual violence occur.

RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) is the nation's largest anti-sexual violence organization and was named one of "America's 100 Best Charities" by Worth magazine. RAINN created and operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline (800.656.HOPE and online.rainn.org) in partnership with more than 1,000 local sexual assault service providers across the country and operates the DoD Safe Helpline for the Department of Defense. In 2015, the Online Hotline expanded to offer services in Spanish at rainn.org/es. The hotlines have helped more than two million people since 1994. RAINN also carries out programs to prevent sexual violence, help victims and ensure that rapists are brought to justice. For more information about RAINN, please visit rainn.org.