For Immediate Release
(Sioux Falls, SD, Wednesday March 15, 2017) Sioux Falls Feminists announce their billboard campaign to support the National Child Abuse Prevention month in April 2017 with billboards erected across Sioux Falls. The billboards began to go up on March 13th and will be displayed until March 27th, with a focus on troubling statistics and an aim to prompt viewers to help combat child abuse. Some of the billboard statistics read:
– “97% of child sex abuse is by family members, relatives or by other adults the children already know.”
– “Only 2.5% of child sex abuse is from a stranger.”
– “There are over 7,000 children in Sioux Falls who are currently being sexually abused!”
The billboards, funded through a local nontheistic (atheist, agnostic, humanist and freethinker) and secular-friendly group—the Sioux Falls Feminists—deliver frank and explicit messages of the pain of people who suffer child abuse with a simple message: child abuse is not pretty.
Dale Hemming, president of Sioux Falls Feminists, wants to prompt people in Sioux Falls to take action against these abuses. “The people of Sioux Falls need to recognize how ugly child abuse really is, and I want them to understand that it’s crucial that instances of child abuse are reported and not kept a secret.” Hemming also added, “It’s important for us as a law-abiding society to provide support for victims—our innocent children who have a right to a joyous future—and to help them understand that being a victim of child abuse is not their fault. They don’t deserve what is being done to them and that they have every right to report their abuse to various authorities. Children need to know where they can get protection from this abuse, and we’ve dedicated a part of the Sioux Falls Feminists website to assist them with a list of 16 different professional organizations that can take child abuse reports and then also provide help and safety.”
The images and wording used in the National Child Abuse Awareness Month billboard campaign have all been reviewed by 8 local and national child abuse professional assistance organizations, but more importantly, by actual victims of child abuse. They all agreed these billboards are “on target” at getting the message across. They all agreed that we must stop hiding the truth and ugliness of child abuse. Victims themselves have all expressed that they wished someone had spoken up so clearly back when they were being abused. Then they might have saved themselves years of guilt and misery living with their abuse. Years they can never fully recover from.
Hemming concluded, “I don’t know any reason why people would have a problem with our message unless there is a reticence to bring such moral and ethics issues into the public square. Do people not want our children to be free to discuss awareness issues that directly impact their lives? It’s time for us to bring these issues into the open and do something about them.”
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Sioux Falls Freethinkers (www.siouxfallsfreethinkers.com) is a home for all those of Free Thought with Open Minds in the Sioux Falls area. The group includes Atheists, Agnostics, and Humanists, those interested in science and Scientists, those who love animals and Zoologists, and Feminists and those wanting to help abused women.
Sioux Falls Feminists (www.siouxfallsfeminists.com) is a group of people in the Sioux Falls area who help women and children who are or have been victims of abuse victims. Their website provides information on how to distinguish signs of domestic abuse and where to find help. There are many links to help centers, help hotlines, counselors and therapists that can give assistance to women and children who are suffering from any abuse.
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For more information, contact:
President, Sioux Falls Freethinkers and Sioux Falls Feminists