A Fairfax County task force established in March to review the state of sexual violence education and awareness presented a set of recommendations to the Board of Supervisors at their Sept. 29 meeting.
The task force comprises representatives from Fairfax County Public Schools, community leaders and staff from the Office for Women & Domestic and Sexual Violence Services.
They reviewed curricula from schools as well as ways organizations in the community can communicate positive messages about the opposite sex to youth and providing victim support services. The task force also looked at how perpetrators could be held more accountable.
School curricula already include an educational base for students on sexual assault, the task force found. But they also see the need for a “change in the culture of acceptance and apathy toward sexual assault in the community,” a statement from supervisor John Cook’s (R-Braddock) office said.
The two main recommendations from the task force include creating a Sexual Violence Curriculum Workgroup, as well as a new position to facilitate the new sexual violence coordinating team, and help with messaging and communication with communities about sexual violence.
“The community-wide sexual violence task force made great progress in developing these strategies to change the community's attitudes toward sexual assault,” Cook said in the statement.
“The task force’s work in providing these recommendations is an important step in reversing the course of our culture, and now we must take these recommendations and strategies and implement them effectively.”