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Safe Room Expansion Service Opens



Local program continues to grow to meet community needs with sexual assault forensic examination room

Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Center recently moved into a larger building to expand its capacity to provide innovative and quality victim services. At their Ribbon Cutting Ceremony & Open House in February, the center announced their SAFE Room expansion service which would provide a safe, comfortable and welcoming space to victims seeking Forensic Exams after a sexual assault.

April is a meaningful month for the center with it being National Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Sexual assault is a serious and widespread problem; one in four girls and one in six boys will be victims of sexual abuse before the age of 18. Additionally, one in five women, and one in 33 men have experienced rape or attempted rape at some time in their lives. The consequences can be devastating and long lasting. So, it could not be more meaningful that this major service expansion is happing this month.

“The Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Center is dedicated to expanding options and improving outcomes for those who have experienced assault; having a choice in where to have an exam is a good first step,” said Shelly Wright, Sexual Assault Therapist & Clinical Supervisor with the Center. “Our new Sexual Assault Forensic Exam (SAFE) Room is an alternative to Hospital Emergency Department assistance following an assault. In our SAFE Room, exams are done on site by specially trained Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners, and Victim Advocates are available throughout the process. This non-hospital option creates a supportive and peaceful environment for the survivor.”

The SAFE Room is set to be open and available to the Rutherford County community beginning April 29th. This service is provided at the Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Center’s public office at 1423 Kensington Square Ct. Murfreesboro, TN and will begin operating during the hours of 8:30am – 4:30pm Monday – Friday.

Wright concluded with a final impactful statement, “During Sexual Assault Awareness Month, and throughout the year, we want survivors of sexual assault to know that what happened to you does not define you. Shame and embarrassment are not your burden to bear. We are here to assist you throughout the process.”

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