One in five Peace Corps volunteers sexually assaulted blamed, punished for reporting sexual assault?, Fraternity president testifies against brothers in pledge’s death

December 2, 2015 Comments Off on One in five Peace Corps volunteers sexually assaulted blamed, punished for reporting sexual assault?, Fraternity president testifies against brothers in pledge’s death

Peace Corps volunteers blamed, punished for reporting sexual assault?
CBS News November 30, 2015

Nearly 7,000 Peace Corps currently serve in about 65 countries. Roughly one in five of them is sexually assaulted during that service, according to the results of a recent anonymous Peace Corps safety questionnaire, obtained exclusively by CBS News.

The report also shows that nearly half don’t report the assaults.

Pressure to change a culture of victim-blaming goes back years, but some survivors still claim they are blamed or punished. One volunteer wrote that in reporting an assault, “I made myself a target.”

“My thought was they’re going to rape me. These men are going to rape me,” said Danae Smith, who volunteered in the remote Dominican Republic town of Los Mosquitos for eight months.

In April, two men with machetes forced the 23-year-old off the village’s main road. Smith got away and reported the assault to the Peace Corps and within a week, the agency told her she was going home.

“They also told me that my attack had occurred because I had been walking in my site and that as a volunteer, it was my job to have been more proactive to prevent it from happening,” Smith said.

More than 500 volunteers have reported experiencing a sexual assault in a little over two years. CBS News spoke with nearly a dozen who questioned how their recent cases were handled. They told us they felt criticized and were threatened they would be fired….

Inspector General reports show multiple cases of Peace Corps personnel – accused in sexual assaults – resigning ahead of administrative action, then being allowed to re-apply to the agency.

A 2014 Inspector General report warned the Peace Corps’ screening process for re-hiring was not detecting past misconduct.

One volunteer who admitted to violating the agency’s sexual assault policy was later hired to work at the agency’s headquarters in Washington, D.C.

“That person is no longer employed by Peace Corps. But I will also say that we are putting in place systems, mechanisms that will make sure that that does not happen again in the future,” said Peace Corps director Carrie Hessler-Radelet. “This is unacceptable to us and we are trying to change the culture.”….
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/cbs-news-finds-peace-corps-volunteers-blamed-fired-after-reporting-sexual-assault/

Fraternity president testifies against brothers in pledge’s death
November 30, 2015
STROUDSBURG, Pa. — A Pennsylvania college fraternity president says he and four others charged in a pledge’s death during a hazing ritual in the Poconos tried to “cover it all up” when they met weeks later.

Daniel Li is cooperating against four Baruch College fraternity brothers charged with third-degree murder in the beating death of 18-year-old Chun Michael Deng.

Li says the Pi Delta Psi brothers gathered in New York afterward to decide what to tell police and their attorneys.

Defense lawyer Steven Brill, who represents co-defendant Sheldon Wong, says no one initially thought the injuries to Deng were life-threatening.

Brill calls the 2013 death accidental. Other defendants are Charles Lai, Kenny Kwan and Raymond Lam.

Police say fraternity members blindfolded Deng, forcing him to wear a heavy backpack, and then repeatedly tackled him during the hazing ritual, known as glass ceiling.

Deng fell unconscious and was carried inside the house while fraternity members changed his clothes and did an Internet search of his symptoms, waiting an hour before taking him to the hospital, according to court documents. Deng, who suffered a brain injury, died a day later….
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/fraternity-president-testifies-against-brothers-in-pledges-death

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