It’s a case that’s prompted a national discussion about alleged sexual molestation, abuse and assault. And that is the case of Roy Moore, a republican candidate for Senate in Alabama. He is accused of improper contact with at least 8 teenagers, all now women well into adulthood who recently came forward.
“When it comes to delayed reporting, we give no consideration to when the reporting happens,” says Keisha Gibson Carter of the Rape Crisis Center of the Coastal Empire. “We start where our survivors are. We believe them because at the end of the day, no one wants to acknowledge that they have been sexually assaulted or raped if it really didn’t happen.”
Carter is concerned about comments of support from officials like the governor of Alabama, who says she will vote for Moore despite her belief the allegations are likely true. “I think it’s a sad commentary to see leaders, and especially a woman uphold an individual who is alleged to have committed these horrible acts of sexual violence against children. You know we have these pieces that are playing out on our national stage happening in the lives of individuals here in Savannah every single day.,” said Carter.
Carter says there is some concern that young people especially may see this topic politicized. But she also believes that because there are so many conversations nationally (because there are a number of allegations against a number of public figures) that in some cases, it can be positive.
“To see some men facing repercussions and losing their jobs, that may provide encouragement for victims to come forward, she says.
In the end, Carter says anyone who needs help should call the Rape Crisis number at 912-233-7273. She says victims may feel powerless but that RCC “will be there for you.”