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New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault Launches Public Education Campaign To Promote "Safe Centers Of Excellence"

July 2, 2009

For Immediate Release
Contact: Jessica Proud, 212-938-0836

Six-Week, Multi-Media Campaign will Include Television, Taxi-TV, Movie Theater Ads and Website 

New York, NY-July 2...The New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault today announced the launch of a targeted, multi-media public education campaign to alert New Yorkers to free, special resources available to victims of sexual violence.
 
The campaign, which will run for six weeks in all five boroughs, will include 30-second television public service announcements, courtesy of Time Warner Cable and Cablevision, Taxi-TV ads, movie theater advertisements and a website: www.besafenyc.org.
 
The ads will alert New Yorkers to the presence of 19 "Safe Centers of Excellence" in hospitals around the city, specifically designed to meet the needs of sexual violence victims. SAFE Centers of Excellence are considered the best victim-centered approach to acute health care for sexual assault patients.
 
The New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault (the Alliance) helped establish the SAFE Centers of Excellence designation in New York in 1995 and worked closely with New York City Emergency Medical Services authorities to create a protocol last year, directing all sexual violence victims calling 911 to SAFE Centers of Excellence.
 
"New York is a leader in providing resources for victims of sexual violence, but too many New Yorkers don't know about these services," said Harriet Lessel, Executive Director of the Alliance. "SAFE Centers can help victims of sexual violence become survivors, and nothing is more important than that. The Alliance is grateful to the New York State Crime Victims Board and all our media partners for making this campaign happen."
 
Director and Producer Amy Hart and her production team at The New York Academy of Medicine's Public Health Productions Office produced six different PSA versions. They feature five talented actresses, who volunteer as victim advocates for SAFE Centers in various New York City hospitals.
 
In addition, Time Warner Cable's New York One News produced an additional PSA, which it will air as a public service on various stations throughout July and beyond. Cablevision will air the PSA on networks including BET, VH1, and E! which target the 18-34 year old female and ethnic minority demographics.  Combined, the PSA will reach an audience approaching 8 million. And throughout July, the PSA will appear on NY 10 Taxi TV. It will be aired in 1,100 cabs, with a total of 366,000 spots. The ad also will be available on popular social networking sites like Facebook.
 
The 20 movie theaters where the public education ads will appear are located in communities with the highest incidents of reported sexual violence (according to the NYPD's Crime Statistics website). Different versions of the PSA will be shown to audiences at PG-13 and R-rated films.
 
"Every New Yorker should know where to go if a friend or family member becomes a victim of sexual violence," Ms. Lessel continued. "The care one gets in the first 24 hours is critically important. Free and compassionate victim-centered SAFE Centers are available in all five boroughs and we are hopeful that this campaign will make their presence common knowledge."


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The New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault builds the capacity of communities, organizations, and institutions to advance the right to live free from sexual violence and reduce the harm it causes individuals, families, and society

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