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Series Sheds Light on Sexual Abuse of People with I/DD

This week NPR – National Public Radio - launched a 7 part series on the sexual abuse of adults with I/DD. The series will air over two weeks (see schedule below) and is the result of a year-long investigation. The Director of The Arc's National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability, Leigh Ann Davis, was interviewed for this series in addition to staff and self-advocates from several chapters of The Arc around the country.

In this time of heightened awareness about sexual harassment, assault and violence, the plight of a vulnerable population at significant risk - people with I/DD - needs to be discussed, addressed and made a priority. For decades, The Arc of New Jersey has worked to enact policy to protect people with I/DD, and educate the public so that they become our partners in keeping people safe. We have also developed programs for people with I/DD to educate and support them, and reduce their risk of being a victim.

As we continue to raise awareness and work to strengthen the safety net for people with I/DD, we ask you to join us in the effort by staying connected, speaking up and acting as needed. Over the next few weeks watch for The Arc of New Jersey's updates. Start today by reading this important series.

View recorded webinars on this important topic at

Go to to read and hear the stories and see the photos and artwork.
Jan 8: Morning Edition: Correspondent Joe Shapiro talks about the series with host Steve Inskeep.
Jan 8: All Things Considered: The epidemic of sexual abuse of people with intellectual disabilities. Numbers obtained by NPR show they are sexually assaulted at rates more than 7 times those for all adults without disabilities.
Jan 9: Morning Edition: A visit to a Sex Ed class for people with intellectual disabilities. They talk about how they want relationships, but how the sexual violence of their past often gets in the way.
Jan 10: All Things Considered: On cases that go unnoticed when people have difficulty communicating.
Jan 16: All Things Considered: Police and prosecutors are often reluctant to take these cases. NPR goes back to Essex County, New Jersey, where the first case to get widespread attention--in Glen Ridge, New Jersey, 25 years ago--was prosecuted. And look at what prosecutors have learned since.
Jan 18: Morning Edition: Therapists Nora Baladerian and Karyn Harvey talk about the stunning violence in the lives of their clients.
Jan 18: All Things Considered: Self-advocates speak--thoughtfully--of the effects of sexual violence. This piece is entirely in the voices of people with intellectual disabilities (plus Joe Shapiro).