Published April 15, 2017
WINDOW ROCK – Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye and Vice President Jonathan Nez signed a proclamation designating the month of April as Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month for the Navajo Nation.
“Sexual Assault is prevalent within our communities on the Navajo Nation. We urge our citizens to report any sexual assault to ensure any and all perpetrators are brought to justice and to mitigate any future instances of sexual assault,” said President Begaye. “Sexual assault doesn’t only impact the person that was assaulted, it affects their families and friends as well. Remember the values of Hozhó and Ké, as Navajo people, it is essential to protect everyone, especially our children.”
Sexual assault is any type of forced or coerced sexual contact or behavior that happens without consent. Sexual assault includes rape, attempted rape, child molestation, and sexual harassment or threats. In the United States, nearly one in five women and one in 71 men have been sexually assaulted.
“We need to remember to respect each other and have integrity. Respect exemplifies your character, your family and where you come from,” said Vice President Nez.
“Everyone can be part of this effort by speaking out against harmful attitudes, actions and these crimes,” said Director Terrelene Massey, Navajo Nation Division of Social Services. “We urge survivors of sexual assault to report assaults and prevent these crimes in their communities.”
“Both Vice President and I are committed to ensuring our people are safe and living healthy relationships,” said President Begaye.
If you or a family member have been sexually assaulted, please contact the Navajo Nation Department of Family Services by phone at (928) 871-6556.
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