This writer attended the Oklahoma City Council meeting on Tuesday August 26th, following the Friday arrest of OKCPD staffer, Daniel Holtzclaw for various crimes from verbally berating women, to burglary and sexualized assaults including rape. The assault is remarkable in two strains, one being Holtzclaw officer status, and the other being the 8 involved reporting women victims are all African American.
This writer, waiting nearly five hours for the public comments section of the meeting watched the gallery continuously cleared of public observers. One council member left about an hour or so before. No other groups or persons attended in complaint, or to question the problem of sex assault services in whole or in part. This writer was allotted slightly over 3 minutes to speak this is the general share. http://www.examiner.com/article/shade-no-shade-okc-councilors-to-receive... Sexual assault services in Oklahoma City were known to not match best practices as early as 2006, and virtually no effort has been given towards bringing that up to standards for children and youth or for adults.
The resulting reply was a couple of things. One was Mayor Mick Cornett, under instruction from the city attorney reported that a return on policy and laws related to the job of the city council would be turned into a handout for the Councilors review. Then, at some later date this document or a synthesized report or statement about the findings from the Council would be presented to this writer and the public, somehow in an update.
Over the course of at least the next month, this writer will look at various things related to this City Council process, and to issues that satellite the problem of sexual assaults.
Unwanted sexually aggressive or sexualized behaviors, and sex assaults are complex issues in and of themselves. These topics in politics are often highly interfered with in delivery of respectful, meaningful, timely services to the victim. This happens by distortion of definition of sex assault, and then is played out in ineffective policy, custom and law. These things should be a road map to supportive services, ( this is called the critical pathway).
Mishandled sexualized aggressions and sex assault are more often a road map to a dead end, sometimes literally for Oklahoma City residents http://www.examiner.com/article/policy-custom-or-law-oklahoma-courtrooms and http://www.examiner.com/article/oklahoma-is-listed-the-top-10-most-dangerous-places-mia-teens and http://www.examiner.com/article/edmond-resident-casady-school-sophomore-anne-s-hall-is-missing
Often poor process is based upon underfunding and bad rules of process. Misplaced political desires and religious bents result in inaction, or wrong action often generating or perpetuating bias in the realms of racism, classism, sexism, ageism, gender issues, religious or other discrimination. It is important on this and other subjects for the Oklahoma City Council to visibly seek and return answers about the status of services and work to repair the defective processes so all things OKC can be a beacon and leader in good quality of life experiences, not just Thunder Basketball, Barons Hockey or Oklahoma River Sports.
Most of the time, this writer's series reads more like a college class than like a news article. Other area news may provide some different coverage. This series is designed to hit on impressions, and provide some baseline information which can help the public ask more or different questions as to what is in place, what could be in place and what must be in place for successful service to sex assault victims and their families.
Think of it as being like the OKC version of a The Lonely Planet travel guide and phrase book for social justice on sexual assault issues. http://shop.lonelyplanet.com/?mckv=sT9ZZmTAQ_dc|pcrid|37245742895|pkw|lonely%20planet|pmt|e&affil=SEM_lpcom-google-us&gclid=CjwKEAjwj4ugBRD1x4ST9YHplzMSJACTDms823FgbOd_UfWJjv5oTMXcjOoUstZ_5_LQOoOPFaAYQBoC-hLw_wcB Or something.