I took an Oath to protect the Constitution. Now here are my Constitutional rights. Written by Isabella Francis Mazotti
A recent returning veteran of the Massachusetts National Guard who was raped by a fellow Guardsman committed suicide late last week. I do not have much details expect from what she personally told me for months prior to her death. We talked often, having met at a sexual assault support group and she told me gruesome accounts of what happened to her when she was raped and even worse the way that Lori Alix and Kelly Souza “helped” this woman-aka DID NOT GIVE A DAMM THAT SHE WAS RAPED. For her privacy I won’t go into details about what she told me except that it was disgraceful.
What I do want to talk about is the “improvements” or so they say. The twenty-four hours hotline at 508-889-6644 is still a hit or miss and most often a miss meaning we can not get through. The “Safe Helpline” at times do require up to a 2 hours wait to talk to someone. TWO HOURS WAIT TO TALK TO SOMEONE ONLINE? To be fair that is the DOD headquarters SAPR aka Kaye Whitley and not the Massachusetts National Guard fault but still putting a link to a on-line chatline is not an improvement. It only brings more stress to a survivor. If it was not for pure scientific purposes I probably would not have stayed the entire two hours to wait to chat with someone on line. The actual chat was not worth the two hours wait.
There and Back Again, a combat-veteran PTSD program that is often filled with MEN and many rape survivors find even the website to be triggering let alone the actual program is still up there. It is run by a JAG in the Army , Sue Lynch, so obviously this is a case that they rather please a military officer than to do the right thing and take it off. If only Sue Lynch if you reading this do what is right and tell them that the safety and protection of rape survivors is more important than shamelessly advertising your program.
Also what is up with that man on http://states.ng.mil/sites/MA/resources/SAPR/default.aspx. Don’t want to look like I am all nit picking but with over 90% of all rapist being MEN many survivors don’t want to be reading about rape and how to get help by looking at pictures of men.
I was raped in the military. I have also worked with rape survivors specifically with NOW and RAINN for many years before RAINN went downhill (NOW still rocks) and unless you been in our shoes you just won’t get it. Massachusetts National Guard, I know you read this on a daily basis (I check IP addresses of people that visit this blog) so take these FREE advice from someone that been there if you are seriously about helping survivors.