WEAVE Partners with CA State Senate to Support Survivors of Sexual Violence
WEAVE to provide Confidential Advocate for Survivors of Sexual Misconduct
As the national dialogue regarding sexual misconduct and violence intensified, a group of California women issued the first open statement by women working in California politics calling for an end to the pervasive culture of harassment and assault within the Capitol community. The words demanded a call to action.
On December 14, 2017, WEAVE CEO Beth Hassett joined California State Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de Leon and other Senate leaders to respond to that call to action. The Senate pro Tempore announced a series of steps to provide resources to Senate employees who experience sexual misconduct in the course of their jobs.
Beginning in January, WEAVE will provide a Confidential Advocate accessible to Senators, Senate staffers, and Senate interns through a confidential telephone number, confidential email, and appointments at a nearby office. The Confidential Advocate will offer emotional support, reporting options, and internal and external resources to Senate staffers who have experienced sexual misconduct including sexual harassment and sexual assault. Until the dedicated telephone number and email are made public, any survivor of sexual violence can contact WEAVE’s 24/7 Support & Information Line at 916.920.2952.
WEAVE offers survivor-centered and trauma-informed services with an assurance of confidentiality not available through any other partnership. As the sole Rape Crisis Center for Sacramento County, WEAVE is the only local organization that can provide Sexual Assault Counselors as defined by the California Evidence Code and offers an assurance of confidentiality privilege and protected communications for survivors of sexual violence. Additionally, WEAVE will educate Senators, staffers, and those interfacing with them about sexual misconduct to move towards changing the culture of Capitol community.
WEAVE will report aggregate data about its activities but no identifying information about any survivor will be shared. Additionally, no member of the Senate nor any Senate employee will have access to the confidential telephone number, confidential emails, or identities of individuals meeting with the Confidential Advocate.
We applaud the actions taken by the California State Senate as they demonstrate a commitment to begin working to change the Capitol culture. Those who experience sexual harassment and assault can report their experiences and receive support outside of the existing systems and structures and with an assurance of confidentiality. The commitment to educate Senators, employees and lobbyists shows an assurance to building a workplace that does not tolerate sexual misconduct and demands equity and respect.
The comments shared by WEAVE CEO Beth Hassett during the press conference are available here. Our partnership with the Senate reflects one piece of a community wide response to supporting survivors of sexual violence. As Sacramento County’s sole Rape Crisis Center, our commitment to every survivor remains steadfast. If you would be part of our work to build a community that does not tolerate sexual violence, you may donate here.