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Letters to the Editor

YWCA hears real stories of sexual assault

To the men and women in our community:

If you use social media, by now you have seen the #MeToo posts, shared half a million times within 24 hours of its start. Unfortunately, this is not a surprise to many, and to us here at the YWCA.

We see women every day, some as clients and some as colleagues. We have heard the very real stories of sexual assault, sexual abuse, and sexual harassment.

The response of some men seemed to be a sense of “discomfort,” “surprise,” and “confusion.” If you were a man who found himself “uncomfortable,” good. That means it worked. It got you thinking about a subject that is often uncomfortable for women.

If you felt uncomfortable reading these posts, imagine how uncomfortable victims felt during the assault and again when they wrote and read these #MeToo posts.

If you were a woman who didn’t see the importance of the movement against sexual assault, we hope you have seen how important it is and joined the fight.

To the men who noticed the massive amount of #MeToo posts and listened, took the opportunity to ask questions, educated themselves, and apologized for the actions of others, we sincerely thank you.

To the victims, women and men alike, who told their stories, we commend you for the bravery it takes to share something so painful to the public on social media.

One in six women and one in 33 men will experience sexual assault in their lifetime. If you have a #MeToo story you are ready to share, the YWCA is ready to listen. A United Way agency, we are here 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Call our hotline at 815-626-7277 or 815-288-1011. Also find us on our Facebook page, YWCA of the Sauk Valley.

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