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Presentation Held to Prevent Educator Sexual Abuse

By Heather Mathis
By hmathis@wbbjtv.com

JACKSON Tenn.- The group "You Have the Power" held a panel "Innocence Shattered: The Devastating Legacy of Educator Sexual Misconduct," on Tuesday.

The group said they sent out press releases to all the schools in Jackson-Madison County but only one person showed up for the event.

"Just the topic in general is difficult for the public to hear," said Lisa Schmidt, director of the Madison County Child Advocacy Center.

"You Have the Power" organizers said sexual abuse in schools is a growing problem. "One in four girls and one in seven boys will have faced sexual molestation by the age of 18," said "You Have the Power" director Cathy Gurley.

Superintendent Buddy White said he was not aware of the event and could not comment on whether educators should have been there. White did tell WBBJ 7 Eyewitness News sexual misconduct is a serious issue that educators need to be aware of.

"We've got to be aware of it, know how to control it, and know how to stop it," said Gurley.

"You Have the Power" was granted money by the state's Office of Criminal Justice, VOCA program to put on these presentations across the state.
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