Archive for category: SANE Program

New Help For North Texas Rape Victims

Categories: SANE Program

(originally posted by cbsdfw.com)

New program offers hope to South Dallas rape victims

Categories: SANE Program

(originally posted by wfaa.com)

Victims of sexual assault in South Dallas can now find help in their own neighborhood.

Before now, victims could only get a rape test kit at two of Dallas County’s 47 hospitals – Parkland and Texas Health Presbyterian Dallas. Both are north of downtown.

But a new program is now offering the exams in South Dallas.

Courtney Underwood is the executive director of the new program at Methodist Dallas Medical Center. She joined Shelly Slater on News 8 at 4 p.m. to talk about why this is a big deal.

New program offers rape exams in southern Dallas for the first time

Categories: SANE Program

(originally posted by dallasnews.com)
By Sarah Mervosh
smervosh@dallasnews.com

Sexual assault victims in southern Dallas no longer have to travel all the way across town to get the rape exam that’s critical to documenting the attack and preserving evidence needed to nab the perpetrator.

Courtney Underwood, executive director of the SANE Initiative (center), posed with Dallas leaders and accepted donations for the new SANE program Thursday.

Courtney Underwood, executive director of the SANE Initiative (center), posed with Dallas leaders and accepted donations for the new SANE program Thursday.

The initiative also begins to address a historical resentment among poor and minority residents on the south side who say they aren’t afforded the same opportunities as northern residents. Two hospitals north of downtown – Parkland Memorial Hospital and Texas Health Presbyterian Dallas – already offer rape kits.

“Unfortunately, Dallas has a perceived — and maybe a real — impression that individuals from the southern sector don’t receive services like those in the north,” Dallas County District Attorney Craig Watkins said at a press conference Thursday. “This program gives us credibility. It gives us the ability to stand up … and say, ‘because you’re from South Dallas, you will be treated just as those individuals from North Dallas.’”

Watkins and Dallas Police Chief David Brown joined representatives from Methodist and Safer Dallas Better Dallas, the group that pushed for the program, to make the announcement Thursday.

Offering rape kits in south Dallas has been the goal since the inception of Safer Dallas Better Dallas’ SANE Initiative, said Courtney Underwood, the initiative’s executive director.

“The unspoken, but often resounding reality is that crime in areas saturated by crime and poverty are often ignored,” she said. “The Methodist Dallas SANE program represents a powerful step forward in bridging a dangerous gap in services while also declaring that neither privilege nor discrimination will determine who receives services and compassion.”

The SANE program at Methodist offers exams to men and women ages 14 and older.

Prior to this month, Dallas was the largest city in the United States with just one SANE program. (Parkland offers tests performed by physicians, not trained nurses).

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