February 26, 2012
Building an Ethical Organization Part 2
In April 2010, the newly formed The Center for Sexual Abuse/Assault Recovery will open their doors. According to the U.S. Department of Justice (2009), a sexual assault happens once every two minutes. The victims of these assaults need a safe place to turn for assistance. Currently there is no centrally located center for these victims. As the director of the Center for Sexual Abuse/Assault Recovery, I believe we will be able to fill the current void in the community, by offering various services currently scattered throughout the community under one roof. The Center for Sexual Abuse/Assault Recovery will be operated by a non-profit organization and will have the capability to offer clients counseling, legal advice, educational programs, and much more. The Center for Sexual/Assault Recovery will serve any victim of sexual assault as well as those close to the victim that may also be affected by the assault, or can aid the victim in recovery. By offering additional programs to the entire family we are able to establish a support system for the victim, while also assisting those who may need a better understanding of what the victim may be going through before, during, and after treatment. It is the center’s goal to provide the best care to those who enter our center; treating all clients confidentially, fairly and with respect; allowing access for everyone to all programs offered. According to Campbell (2008), “Rape victims encounter significant difficulties obtaining help from the legal, medical, and mental health systems, and what help they do receive can leave them feeling blamed, doubted, and re-victimized. As a result, survivors' post-rape distress may be due not only to the rape itself but also to how they are treated by social systems after the assault.” (para. 40) The Center for Sexual Assault/ Abuse Recovery will provide the services needed to assist victims at every step of recovery as well as any possible legal proceedings. This is something that I do have firsthand knowledge of. I was raped from the tender age of six through the age of fourteen when I married my husband to get away from home. Back then there was no help for victims. When I went to the Chattanooga, Tennessee Police Department with my accusations my parents were brought in and told to take me to a psychiatrist. I was then taken home and beaten so bad I could not attend school for a month because of the bruises. Increased risk of sexual revictimization in women previously sexually assaulted in childhood, adolescence, or adulthood is a phenomenon now well-documented in the literature (Classen, Palesh, & Aggarwal, 2005; Collins, 1998; Gidycz, Hanson, & Layman, 1995; Krahé, Scheinberger-Olwig, Waizenhöfer, & Kolpin, 1999; Messman-Moore & Long, 2000), yet limited research has examined mechanisms underlying increased risk. Both child sexual abuse (CSA) and adult sexual assault (ASA) are related to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD; Briere & Runtz, 1987; Seedat & Stein, 2000), and researchers have also found a strong relationship between PTSD and sexual revictimization (Arata, 2000; Bolstad & Zinbarg, 1997;Boney-McCoy & Finkelhor, 1995; Ullman & Brecklin, 2002). Substance use (problem drinking and/or illicit drug use) is also associated with risk of sexual revictimization (Abbey, Zawacki, Buck, Clinton, & McAuslan, 2003; Greene & Navarro, 1998; Koss & Dinero, 1989; Rich, Combs-Lane, Resnick, & Kilpatrick, 2004; Ullman, 2003). PTSD and substance use may be outcomes of revictimization, although this is unclear from past research, most of which is cross sectional. Therefore, women who experienced sexual victimization both as a child and as an adult may experience more PTSD symptoms and more substance use compared to women who experienced only adult sexual...