WXXI AM News

Local crisis centers fielding more calls amid Kavanaugh hearings

Sep 28, 2018

The number of calls to Restore Sexual Assault Services in Rochester has been on the increase in recent days, leading up to Thursday's emotional testimony from Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, and Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who accuses him of sexually assaulting her while they were in high school.

Kavanaugh adamantly denied the allegations.

Credit restoresas.org

Director of Education and Outreach for Restore, Mary Jo Marino, says there has been a noticeable increase in the number of people contacting her organization.

"Just alone this week we've handled as many calls as we typically receive in a month.  So, that gives you a sense of just the increase.  Most people are reaching out that are looking for supportive services, they're looking to get set up with our counseling services, they're looking to talk," she said.

Marino says the media coverage can be triggering for survivors of sexual assault, and she says Restore is happy people are reaching out for that support.

Credit willowcenterny.org

At Willow Domestic Violence Center, President and CEO Meaghan de Chateauvieux says calls to her organization have doubled in the last few days, but the media attention surrounding this can empower victims.

"I think that domestic violence and sexual assault and sexual abuse, they feed on silence and the victims remaining silent, and so the more survivors that come forward, we have this strength in numbers," she said.

Both agree that it's important having this issue on such a national scale encourages dialogue on matter.

Here are links to Restore and Willow

Restore's 24 hour hotline is 546-2777

Willow's 24/7 number is 222-SAFE