Supervisors preview Sexual Assault Awareness Month in Carson City

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Carson City has a strong sexual assault support system, according to Traci Trenoweth with Advocates to End Domestic Violence.
She and her volunteers at AEDV sit with sexual assault survivors for long hours at the hospital, sheriff’s office, courts and elsewhere, helping them work through trauma as they make medical and legal decisions.
“An average call, if it goes to an exam, is six to eight hours from beginning to end,” Trenoweth said.
She has 23 volunteers on-call who travel in teams of two, sacrificing sleep to comfort sexual assault survivors.
Sexual Assault Awareness Month isn’t until April, but on Thursday the Board of Supervisors heard presentations from Trenoweth, the sheriff’s office, and Health and Human Services on how the city responds to calls and offers support to victims.
When the sheriff’s office first gets a sexual assault report, it responds with a patrol deputy who ensures the victim is safe and begins collecting evidence on scene when possible. AEDV responds with a volunteer to comfort the victim.
“Getting the victims to file a report or provide the details that we in law enforcement need can be the most traumatic part of the event,” said Sheriff Ken Furlong.
He thanked Trenoweth for training volunteers to provide emotional support.
“Over the years, we’ve seen an increase in those (victims) wanting to report,” Trenoweth said. “We’re able to walk them through that and let them know that the support is here.”
Prior to 2016, if victims agreed to an exam, they would have to find transportation to Reno. Health and Human Services Director Nicki Aaker said that CCHHS made a big push to bring those services to Carson City.
AEDV is also able to step in and provide counseling services when victims file a report. Trenoweth said she finds many victims who don’t necessarily want the service immediately, but who need the support down the line.
Board of Health Chair Colleen Lyons invited everyone to participate in “Denim Day” on April 27 to support victims and raise awareness for sexual assault and prevention.
Among other agenda items, supervisors:
• Heard a report on state-funded treatment options for COVID-19. Residents who need treatment should visit or call 1-800-401-0946. The state has dedicated over $19 million to ensure that residents can get free therapeutics to treat COVID-19.
• Accepted the 2021 Annual Health and Human Services Report. Aaker said that looking forward, the city will be conducting more outreach among homeless residents, and she asked that the supervisors consider a long-term investment in more health infrastructure to support disease prevention and treatment.


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