FCASV Insight September 2017

FCASV Provides Legal Assistance to Victims

In order to help fill the need for holistic legal representation of Florida's survivors of sexual violence, FCASV's Legal Assistance to Victims (LAV) program provides comprehensive legal services on various civil legal issues.

Areas that the LAV team provides assistance:
- Education
- Housing
- Employment
- Victim Compensation
- Immigration
- Terminating Parental Rights
- Victims' Rights During the Criminal Case
- Injunctions (Restraining Orders)

Survivors' privacy and safety are vitally important. Being the victim of a sexual assault impacts privacy and safety in all of these areas of legal needs. We will work with survivors to make sure privacy is best protected and safety is of utmost priority.

When speaking with our attorneys and victim advocate, information will be confidential and will not be shared without the survivor's permission.

If the issue the survivor needs help with is not listed here, we may still be able to help or refer to someone who can, so do not hesitate to contact us.

Call (850) 297-2000 or email legal@fcasv.org. Please expect a response within 2 business days. Our business hours are Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm. For immediate rape crisis assistance please contact the statewide information line at 1-888-956-RAPE.

For more information about the LAV program, visit fcasv.org.

Center Highlight: Nancy J. Cotterman Center

Imagine you are a non-English speaker who has survived a trauma. The responding police officer does not speak your language and you struggle to communicate with what little words you know in English. After several hours of trying to decipher what is being said to you, you are then taken to a facility unfamiliar to you. As you walk in, you are not sure why you were brought there to begin with. You get escorted to a private waiting area and there is a knock on the door. Imagine that the person who greets you starts speaking in your native tongue. Imagine the relief of being able to finally communicate what has happened to you and understand why you were brought to the crisis center.

One of the greatest challenges of any sexual assault program is communicating with a population that speaks a language other than English. At the Nancy J. Cotterman Center, we are fortunate to be located in the heart of a diverse cultural community known as South Florida, which allows for many of our staff to be linguistically diverse. From Spanish, French, and Creole, we are able to serve clients that primarily speak those languages during the entirety of their visit at our facility.

In the event there is a client that speaks another language other than those mentioned above, our close partnerships with our various stakeholders, such as law enforcement and child protective investigations, allow us to reach out to them to assist with translation services as availability permits. In addition, the language line is accessible 24/7 for those instances where a staff member is not available to provide translation services. No matter the circumstance, we are able to assist our non-English speaking clients at all hours of the day.


Latinx Outreach Enhancements

By: Eva Fiallos-Diaz

The Florida Council Against Sexual Violence constantly strives to improve its approaches to serving marginalized populations in Florida. One such group is the Latinxs and/or Hispanic population. In the spirit of solidarity and collaboration, I recently applied for and was granted membership to ALAS. ALAS is the acronym for La Alianza Latina en Contra la Agresión Sexual (The National Latina Alliance Against Sexual Violence). The word ‘alas’ can also be translated to ‘wings’ in English. ALAS is a national Latinx-led network of advocates that seeks to address and prevent sexual violence, empower communities, and eliminate barriers for survivors. It addresses those goals through collaborative efforts that include the development of models, resources, and policies. It also employs the use of cyberactivism. ALAS was created under the auspices of Arte Sana, a nationally recognized Latina-led agency, and its members have been among the first to offer sexual violence training in Spanish at various state and national training events.

ALAS members were among the 641 Latina victim advocates and Latinx community health workers from 25 states (including Florida) who informed, reviewed, tested, and contributed to the first glossary of sexual assault terms in English and Spanish. This glossary, which helped promote the standardization of diverse terminology from region to region, and other materials, are among Arte Sana’s ‘Existe Ayuda (Help Exists)’ project deliverables available on the Office for Victims of Crime website.

The last Floridian advocate to join ALAS, was Maria Veliz, FCASV Technical Assistance Coordinator, back in 2004. I am looking forward to working with my national hermanxs as we tackle a variety of accessibility projects. One forthcoming project is the acceptance of Spanish language proposals for workshops (in Spanish) for our June 2018 biennial summit. We have completed a request for proposals in Spanish that was released this week.

For more information about ALAS and to access the various position statements regarding eliminating victim assistance access barriers for Latinx survivors of sexual violence, please visit the ALAS webpage. And, don't forget that September 15-October 15 is National Hispanic Heritage Month!

Mejorando el Alcanze Latinx
Por: Eva Fiallos-Diaz

El Concilio Contra La Violencia Sexual de la Florida se esfuerza constantemente en mejorar los servicios a las poblaciones marginadas y subatendidas de la Florida. Uno de esos grupos es la población latinx y / o hispanx. En el espíritu de solidaridad y colaboración, recientemente solicité y me hice miembra del grupo ALAS. ALAS es el acrónimo para La Alianza Latina en Contra la Agresión Sexual. ALAS es una red liderada por asesorxs latinxs que buscan tratar y prevenir la violencia sexual, empoderar a las comunidades, y eliminando las barreras para lxs sobrevivientes. Aborda esos objetivos a través de esfuerzos de colaboración que incluyen el desarrollo de modelos, recursos, y políticas. También emplea el uso del activismo cibernético, o ciberactivismo. ALAS fue creada bajo los auspicios de Arte Sana, una agencia nacional también liderada por latinxs, y sus miembrxs han sido entre lxs primerxs en ofrecer entrenamiento sobre la violencia sexual en español en diversos eventos de capacitación estatales y nacionales.

Lxs miembrxs de ALAS fueron entre 641 de lxs asesorxs y promotorxs de víctimas latinas, representando 25 estados (incluyendo Florida), quienes informaron, revisaron, probaron, y contribuyeron al primer glosario de términos de agresión sexual en inglés y español. Este glosario, que ayudó a promover la estandarización de la diversa terminología de región a región, y otros materiales, están disponibles entre los resultados del proyecto 'Existe Ayuda (Help Exists)' de Arte Sana en el sitio web de la Oficina para las Víctimas del Crimen.

La última asesora Floridiana que se unió al grupo ALAS, fue María Veliz, Coordinadora de Asistencia Técnica del Concilio Contra la Violencia Sexual de la Florida, en 2004. Me alegra tener la oportunidad de trabajar con mis hermanxs nacionales mientras adelantamos varios proyectos de accesibilidad. Un proyecto futuro es la aceptación de propuestas para talleres en español para nuestra conferencia bienal en junio 2018. Hemos completado una solicitud de propuestas en español que esperamos publicar esta semana.

Para obtener más información sobre ALAS y para acceder a las diversas declaraciones de posición sobre la eliminación de las barreras de acceso a la asistencia a sobrevivientes Latinxs de la violencia sexual, visite la página web de ALAS. Y no olvide que desde el 15 de septiembre hasta el 15 de octubre ¡se celebra el Mes Nacional de la Herencia Hispana!

Questions and Answers:
What is a promotorx?
Promotorxs are lay Hispanic/Latinx community members who receive specialized training to provide basic health education in the community without being professional health care workers.

Why do you use the x in Latinx?
Spanish is a very gendered language. The word “latino” generally refers to a male identifying individual while “latina” refers to a female identifying person. In an effort to honor the genders of all Latinxs/Hispanics we use the x in place of the o and a.

What about the @ symbol?
The @ symbol has also been used to promote gender inclusivity but also upholds the male/female binary. The x is trans-inclusive.

What about spoken Spanish?
It is definitely not easy to incorporate the x into a lot of spoken Spanish words. Latinx is not a blanket term. It is meant to stimulate conversation and acknowledge that there is a spectrum to gender and the linguistic effects of Spanish colonialism on the Americas.


Statewide SART 2016-2017 Guidance

In the 2016-2017 session, the Statewide SART membership was comprised of four subcommittees: Campus Services, Criminal Justice, Forensics, and Victim Services. Members for the 2016-17 year came from a variety of backgrounds and included survivors, campus equity officers, law enforcement, attorneys, advocates, and nurses. This year’s membership developed goals and guidance for providing meeting space for Title IX coordinators, developing training for judges and prosecutors, drafted a template for victim-centric case suspension forms, and advocated for housing protections for victims. While no community is compelled to adopt these goals, the Statewide SART provides this information based on combined expertise in serving victims and survivors. The underlying theme is the importance of community- and system-based agencies reaching out and coming together to provide comprehensive and collaborative services for survivors.

The Florida Council Against Sexual Violence commends the hard work and dedication of the Statewide SART Advisory Committee members. We encourage policy makers and community leaders to consider their guidance in order to provide victims of sexual violence the response they deserve, and the services they need to overcome the trauma of rape. The recommendations will be released on Friday, September 29 and available at fcasv.org.

FCASV Welcomes Two New Employees

Juanita Sapp, Grant Coordinator

Juanita began working at FCASV in July. Before joining FCASV, she was a Project Coordinator for an engineering firm. Juanita will be working with program and contract staff to collect and manage grant reports. Juanita is pleased to join FCASV and is committed to the agency’s mission.

Beverly Gregory, Contract Manager

Beverly joined the staff at FCASV in July – new to FCASV, but not new to the world of grants. She began her career in the field of sexual violence in 1999 as a Domestic and Sexual Violence Counselor for Refuge House in Tallahassee. She worked in the Outreach Office in Gadsden County where she coordinated the rape crisis response team. She counseled adult victims of domestic and sexual violence, and facilitated group sessions in the outreach office, women’s prison, county jail and the community.

After Refuge House, Beverly worked for five years as a Contract Manager for the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence. At the Coalition, her focus was the STOP program – Services, Training, Officers, and Prosecutors – where she assisted state attorney offices, law enforcement agencies, and victim service providers. In her spare time, she enjoys family and church.

Upcoming Events and Trainings

Jackson & Calhoun: Developing a Multidisciplinary Response to Sexual Assault

October 4, 2017
Marianna, FL

For more information about this training and to register, visit fcasv.org.

Request for Proposals: E-learning and Instructor-led Training Development Project

Deadline: October 13, 2017, 5:00 p.m. EDT

FCASV is issuing a Request for Proposals (RFP) to establish a contract for e-learning and instructor-led training development services specific to the agency’s Advocacy Core Training (ACT). Visit fcasv.org for more information and to view the RFP.

Washington & Holmes: Developing a Multidisciplinary Response to Sexual Assault

October 18, 2017
Chipley, FL

For more information about this training and to register, visit fcasv.org.

40-Hour SANE Training

October 30-November 3, 2017
Winter Haven, FL

For more information about this training and to register, visit fcasv.org.

40-Hour SANE Training

December 4-8, 2017
Fort Lauderdale, FL

For more information about this training and to register, visit fcasv.org.

Rural Immigration Webinar

December 11, 2017

This webinar is geared toward sexual violence advocates working with immigrant survivors in Florida's rural communities. The webinar will feature information about Florida's immigrant population, common terminology, the barriers immigrants face accessing services, safety planning considerations, legal remedies, and a Q&A session.

To register, visit fcasv.org.

Save the Date & Take a Stand: Reaching Out, Coming Together Summit

June 13-15, 2018
Naples, FL

Are you committed to re-energize the movement against sexual violence? We challenge you to take a stand and join us at our Biennial Summit at the Naples Grande Beach Resort.

For more information, visit fcasv.org.

Save the Date: 40-Hour SANE Training

June 11-15, 2018
Naples, FL

Check fcasv.org for updates with more information about this training.














































This project was supported by subgrant No. COHK4 awarded by the state administering office for the STOP Formula Grant Program. The opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this publication/program/exhibition are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the state or the U.S. Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women.