Emily Hicks, Miss Portsmouth, hosted ‘Let’s Get R.A.D.’, an informative, interactive session concerning rape in the cafetorium of Portsmouth High School Saturday, June 25. Jantzen Dettwiller, a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) at Southern Ohio Medical Center was the guest speaker.
With an audience composed of Hicks, along with other Miss River Days candidates, a host of other high school students, and some adults the R.A.D. session was in full force, composed of a presentation and actual physical self-defense instruction, according to Hicks.
“Today we have a self-defense class going on. Its taught by the R.A.D. instructors, which is Rape, Aggression, Defense instructors from Shawnee State University’s Department of Safety Hicks said. “So, for the first hour, we will do an educational Power Point by our speaker, and the second hour is the physical self-defense class.”
Dettwiller walked the group through the process of what happens to rape victims when the visit the Southern Ohio Medical Center Emergency Room, and what they encounter when seen by SANE medical staff.
“I am a nurse at Southern Ohio Medical Center,” Dettwiller said. “And so I took the special training to be a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner. Basically, what I talked about today is what happens when a rape victim is assaulted, and she comes into the ER, kind of the process of what we do as nurses to help her in the process.”
Rape is a horrific experience, and the SOMC SANE staff are there to help victims.
“It is a devastating event that happened in their life, and we are the first people there to help her through the process,” Dettwiller said. “We perform a rape kit, and we submit the evidence to the BCI in Columbus, and then they process it for DNA. From there it just depends on the victim, whether she wants to report it or not. If she does, it will go to the police, and it will be in their hands from that point.”
Compassion is what all rape victims need, Dettwiller said.
“Nursing is about compassion, and so I feel that these victims need compassion,” Dettwiller said. “They are the ones who just went through something horrible that is going to affect them for the rest of their lie, so they need somebody there in the first couple of hours after the event to be there for them so that they are not afraid.”
Hicks said reporting incidents of rape is paramount in every case.
“As the speaker was saying, a lot of times incidents of rape go unreported,” Hicks said. “And if we don’t report it, we can’t make it stop. If we know the perpetrator, we can put them in jail, and keep them from ever doing it again.”
Hicks said she is very appreciative of the massive support for her R.A.D. event, as well as the support for her other Miss Porttsmouth related efforts.
“My support has just been outpouring,” Hicks said. “So many people from the school have been helping me, and letting me use their facilities. It has been great.”
Reach Portia Williams at 740-353-3101, ext. 1929, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.