Start by Believing Headlines
Tuesday, October 14th, 2014
Colorado Springs Forensic Nurse Examiners Start by Believing
Rape victims need to be believed. It’s a simple concept that is gaining momentum in emergency rooms, police stations, district attorneys’ offices and among a network of community advocacy groups.
Megan Lechner and Rebecca Gerstel, forensic nurses at Memorial Hospital, are bringing the message – Start By Believing – to Colorado Springs. They are spearheading a local public service campaign, which was first initiated by End Violence Against Women International in 2011.

Nearly 600 rape victims came to Memorial’s emergency room in 2013. That’s the most rape cases of all EDs in Colorado.

The victims arrive hurt, humiliated, scared, in shock. How do you begin to heal a wounded spirit?

“The most important thing you can say is ‘we believe you,” Lechner said. “If a victim is told they are believed, it has a lot to do with their healing.”

Gerstel added, “It might be the only time they hear it.”

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Start by Believing campaign proudly brought to you by End Violence Against Women International (EVAWI).