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After learning about the experiences of people with disabilities such as Natalie who have survived sexual assault, are you wondering how you can get involved and advocate? Here are some steps you can take to be an advocate for sexual assault survivors:
1. Natalie’s Voice is happy to have volunteers join the cause. Email Natalie’s Voice if you are interested in volunteering for our organization.
2. Spread Public Service Announcements (PSAs) to grow awareness that people with disabilities are a highly vulnerable population via social media, posters, newspapers, etc.
3. Reach out to public agencies if you are informed about abuse toward people with disabilities. Public agencies have the obligation to protect, respond and support victims with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
4. Communicate with stakeholders on the reality and importance of victims with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and inform them on what they can do to create change. Key agency stakeholders need to meet regularly and discuss the coordination of response and support services; police, adult protective services, ombudsman, community licensing and those who administer SART exams.
5. Caregivers have the right to be informed that there is a sexual assault epidemic among people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Case managers need to be tooled for a discussion regarding a plan for Before/During/After an assault occurs in order to properly pursue justice and provide support.
You can donate through the Right Care Now Project. Issues arise when it comes to people working as direct service providers: they often leave their job within a year, doctors report they do not have the knowledge to take care of someone with an intellectual or developmental disability, etc. Right Care Now prevents unnecessary hospitalizations, promotes inclusion within healthcare and find, report and prevent sexual abuse toward people with IDD. Donate now to be part of the cause to ensure people with IDD have access to expert care, wherever they are and wherever they live.