Weinstein conviction may increase calls at YWCA crisis hotline

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Harvey Weinstein was found guilty of rape and criminal sexual act Monday morning. This comes as more charges of sexual assault were announced in California last month. The accusations may cause some survivors of sexual violence to think back to their own experience. 

“There are a lot of women who maybe can’t name what happened to them. They maybe had experience that they felt like wasn’t quite right,” said Sarah Wolf-Knight, grants and advocacy manager at YWCA Dayton.

Some of those women may choose to call the YWCA’s 24 hour, seven day a week crisis hotline. The number is 937-222-SAFE (7233). Callers can get help with service referrals, safety planning or can just have someone listen to their concerns.

“For women following the Kavanaugh hearings, I know we did get an uptick in calls because that for many women was very re-traumatizing,” said Wolf-Knight.

Wolf-Knight said a guilty verdict for Weinstein may do the same and it may also inspire survivors to take legal action of their own. 

“It helps women think back to that experience and say, you know what? I’m confident about that, I did experience sexual violence,” said Wolf-Knight.  

She does acknowledge that for some survivors, justice is a personal journey of healing rather than a legal win. 

“We’re here to walk alongside women as they figure out what that looks like for them,” said Wolf-Knight.  

She said coming forward is still difficult for survivors. 

“Sometimes it takes things like the Me Too movement where you’re feeling like you’re with this collective of other women. Then also, it takes having supports like here at the YWCA Dayton,” said Wolf-Knight.  

Staff at the crisis hotline will be ready for any possible rise in calls as a result. 

“I think anytime that we’re having more conversations about the prevalence of sexual violence and making women feel they are not alone is very important,” said Wolf-Knight.

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