Silver Spring, Md., October 29, 2020 — The Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault (MCASA) has released a public service announcement (PSA) reminding survivors and the public that help is available 24/7.
The COVID-19 crisis has emboldened perpetrators of sexual violence. Sex offenders are using the pandemic to gain or renew access to victims, intimidate survivors into silence, and interfere with survivors' attempts to seek safety and justice. Sexual assault survivors report their trauma is amplified by quarantines, economic pressures, and fears for the future. The public service announcement reminds survivors that rape crisis centers are available 24/7 and can provide help when they are ready. Support for sexual assault survivors has continued throughout the crisis, even in the face of stay at home orders.
Available in both English and Spanish, the PSA tells sexual assault survivors how they can access the services they need during the pandemic. The PSA will air on radio and television stations across the state of Maryland.
To view the PSA, visit: https://mcasa.org/stats-info/media-kit/public-service-announcements.
Survivors of sexual violence can visit MCASA’s website, or call 211 to be connected with local rape crisis centers and hotline counselors: https://mcasa.org/survivors/find-a-rape-crisis-center
MCASA is the federally-recognized state sexual assault coalition and responsible for certifying comprehensive rape crisis/sexual assault programs to ensure services are survivor centered. MCASA's core members are the State's 17 rape crisis centers, and the Coalition also represents the voices of many other member professionals, programs, and individuals committed to ending sexual violence. MCASA includes the Sexual Assault Legal Institute (SALI), which provides direct legal services to survivors of all ages across the state of Maryland. MCASA is the leading public policy advocate for survivors of sexual assault in Annapolis and more information about legislative priorities, public events, and services for survivors can be found at www.mcasa.org.