April is National Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month. Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen says the public should support survivors, holding offenders accountable and working toward prevention of sexual assault.
Locally, Tri-County Council on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault spokesperson Melissa Dailey says
".....it has very little to do with sex. It has more to do with power and control over the victim. A lot of times what we see is that the victim, because they may have said 'no' or they didn't fight back or any of those things that the victim feels like they have done something wrong..."
She says often after an assault, many people ask questions of the victim....
"....children talk to a parent about it or someone goes to a friend, you're first reaction is, 'what did you say?', 'what did you do?, 'what were you wearing?', those are all victim blaming questions. We need to put the focus back on the perpetrator and not on the victim...."
She says they're going to schools this month to talk to students.
Tri-County's office is in Rhinelander and they serve Oneida, Vilas and Forest counties. They have a website and toll-free number.