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How to help Christine Blasey Ford and other victims of sexual assault

How to help Christine Blasey Ford and other victims of sexual assault
[Screenshot: PBS News Hour]

Today Christine Blasey Ford testified before Congress, describing a traumatic sexual assault she says she experienced some thirty-plus years ago at the hands of Brett Kavanaugh, now a Supreme Court nominee. During the hearing, U.S. senators and a career prosecutor grilled her about her past, her story, and why she came forward. We learned a lot about the California-based professor, and how her life has been upended since her name was made public—including how she’s had to flee her home multiple times due to death threats. Ford has been actively harassed for weeks.

This has led to many supporters wondering how they can help both Ford and others. Though her lawyers are working on a pro bono basis, Ford’s family has had to hire security detail to protect themselves. Indeed, people have already donated over $200,000 to a GoFundMe to help Ford deal with this financial burden.

As of right now, that campaign has stopped taking donations, although its creator posted a note saying she might resume it. However, there are many worthy organizations out there to help victims of sexual assault. The Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN), for example, is an organization whose sole purpose to help victims of sexual assault. You can donate to it here. The National Sexual Violence Resource Center is another group focused on helping survivors.

What’s important now is that survivors like Ford are heard and believed. Currently there are at least two other people who have come forward alleging shocking stories about Kavanaugh. While there don’t seem to be any fundraising campaigns out there to help them yet–the way to take this issue forward is by making sure that people better understand and believe survivors, and by supporting the groups that help make this happen.

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