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Archive for July, 2010

Attention New Peace Corps Volunteers!

During my time as a PCV, I became concerned about Peace Corps’ approach to sexual assault response protocol, prevention, and training. I am now an active member of the First Response Action Coalition (firstresponseaction.blogspot.com). First Response Action is a coalition of both returned and current Peace Corps Volunteers with a mission to support PCVs who are survivors of sexual abuse by advocating for policy reform, relevant training, medical and emotional support. As you may know, there were 131 reported victims of rape or sexual assault in Peace Corps in 2008. It is our belief that many posts have not developed clear response procedures when such crimes occur. We have developed a Peace Corps Survey on sexual assault training to further assess the situation.

Casey Frazee, First Response Action founder, had a conference call with Peace Corps Headquarters in March. PC says they are implementing changes to the Volunteer Handbook and they are even updating the Rape Response Handbook (the most recent version is from 1996). While I whole-heartedly want to believe Peace Corps, I also want to check and see what is going on in sexual assault trainings around the world.

If you are a new Peace Corps Trainee or Volunteer (or if you are leaving soon) please visit the blog, fill out the survey, and pass it along to any incoming PCVs (PCTs). Instructions on how to return the survey are on the form. Honest answers are most appreciated. No names or identifying details will be shared with PC or anyone outside the Coalition board members. We respect confidentiality!

It only takes a minute! Thanks SO much! The survey is available here-
http://firstresponseaction.blogspot.com/2010/06/incoming-pcvs-we-need-you.html.