4th Annual Safe Homes, Safe Streets Awareness Day and Reception

- For Immediate Release

Statewide Advocacy Group Urges Legislature to Act.

Topeka, Kan. - State legislators from both parties will come together and address violence against women and children next week at KCSDV's 4th Annual Safe Homes, Safe Streets event at the Statehouse.

"We are asking the Kansas Legislature to step up and address the gaps in services to victims of sexual and domestic violence in Kansas," said Sandy Barnett, executive director of the Kansas Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence. "It will take all of us to work towards safe homes and safe streets in Kansas."

Barnett and Democrat and Republican legislators and will speak at the event's press conference 10:00 am Thursday, February 8, 2007 at the Statehouse first floor rotunda.

"Currently, only about 40% of Kansas counties have sexual or domestic violence advocacy services for victims," Barnett said. "That needs to change and we call on the legislature to provide funding for service expansion across the state."

"If I have learned nothing else from the past 25 years of advocacy, I have learned that addressing this violence takes all of us, including our public officials," Barnett said.

The press conference is part of KCSDV's 4th annual Safe Homes, Safe Streets event, an opportunity KCSDV member program to come together at the Statehouse to provide awareness materials and to visit with legislators.

The event ends with a 6:00 pm reception at Maner Conference Center, which kicks off with a welcome by Attorney General Paul Morrison. During the 7:30 program, KCSDV will announce its advocate and ally of the year awards, and then Loretta Ross will speak about "Sexual Violence as a Human Rights Violation." Ross is the founder and former executive director of the National Center for Human Rights Education in Atlanta, Georgia. She was one of the first African American women to direct a rape crisis center in the 1970s.

Contact: Laurie Harrison
KCSDV (Topeka) 785.232.9784

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