Garrison teams sign anti-child abuse, anti-sexual assault proclamations
April 13, 2011
FORT STEWART, Ga. - Colonel Kevin Milton, garrison commander for Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield and Command Sgt. Maj. James Ervin, command sergeant major for Stewart-Hunter, signed a proclamation against sexual assault and child abuse, in a ceremony, April 7.
Colonel Milton said that prior to becoming garrison commander, he did not understand much about child abuse and sexual assault, but the dedicated individuals at Army Community Service, who oversaw the proclamation signings, changed that.
"You have certainly educated me," said Col. Milton. "It's a problem here in our community on the installation and our community outside the gate. It's a problem in our nation. And I think we all can agree, one sexual assault and one case of child abuse is one too many."
Colonel Milton added he was proud of the programs to prevent sexual assault and child abuse and was encouraged by the declining number of sexual assault and child abuse cases he has seen.
Command Sergeant Major Ervin also addressed why both of these proclamations are so important.
"When you think of sexual assault and child abuse, you think about two very important issues at the forefront of this installation," he said. "One is too many. I often read across the packets that come across my desk, I also put myself in the Families' place. I wonder how they are impacted. That gives me the passion and the fuel to take care of everyone involved in that particular case."
Medra Barnes-Larrieus, a sexual assault response coordinator, was at the signing and spoke on why the day was so important.
"The proclamation signing itself is important overall because it emphasizes the assault of the sexual assault program," she said. "This is National Sexual Assault Prevention Month nationwide. But the garrison command signing this proclamation emphasizes the commitment there is to this program and the victims." The proclamation signing was done in coordination with National Sexual Assault Awareness Month and National Child Abuse Awareness Month, which is April.