Here's an announcement about an important program which I learned about from Minnesota's Sexual Violence Prevention Network (SVPN) E-News.
No More Victims: How we can reduce sex crimes in our communities, February 3, 2009
An innovative, new strategy, with proven results to reduce rates of sexual reoffending, is underway – the Minnesota Circles of Support and Accountability (MnCoSA) project.
Learn about MnCoSA and issues related to sex offenders in Minnesota at a free, informational evening on February 3, 2009. This event is hosted by the MN Department of Corrections and Amicus, both committed to improving public safety by helping people change their lives.
MnCoSA emphasizes relationship-based approaches where volunteers “walk with” an offender as he/she is released from prison and reenters society. On February 3rd, attendees will have an opportunity to learn about the various categories of sex offenders, their post-release lives and challenges, and how community members may get involved as trained MnCoSA volunteers to help work toward the goal of “no more victims.” Participants will be able to ask questions of staff, current volunteers and others working with MnCoSA.
Light refreshments will be served. RSVP to Joann Dillavou 651-361-7593 firstname.lastname@example.org . To learn more about MnCoSA visit: www.doc.state.mn.us/volunteer/mncosa.htm
When: Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Time: 6:00-8:00 p.m.
Where: MN Department of Corrections, West Entrance, Lower Level, Itasca Room, 1450 Energy Park Drive, St. Paul, MN 55108
When I was volunteering answering the rape crisis line, I attended a training where local parole officers talked about this program. This is a great addition to the existing options for certain sex offenders after they are released from prison.
There will always be sex offenders who are simply too dangerous for any program to stop them from reoffending if they get the opportunity to do so and who should be in prison as long as possible. But there are sex offenders who can stop offending with strong support that is mixed with accountability.
One of the reasons change is possible for many sex offenders is that systemic victim blaming and rape denial is a very strong contributor to many rapes. The common belief in deserved rape is just one of the contributors to people making the decision that they are doing nothing wrong when they rape.
If the messages rapists get from non-rapists helps them rape then more accurate messages from non-offenders can help them avoid committing rape.
For men who want to demonstrate that they understand that men's violence toward women isn't just a women's issue, here is another event which was included in the SVPN E-News.
Men’s Rally at the Capitol, February 11, 2009
Men’s Rally at the Capitol. Sponsored by: Minnesota Men’s Action Network: Alliance to Prevent Sexual & Domestic Violence (MNMAN), in support of the 2009 Action Day to End Violence Against Women. Help to create a violence free Minnesota by providing safety, promoting justice, and preventing harm for women and children.
February 11, 2009
South steps of MN State Capitol
For more information on the Minnesota Men’s Action Network, please visit: www.menaspeacemakers.org/programs/mnman