DENVER (CBS4) – Phone calls to a Denver-area sexual assault support and advocacy center more than doubled Thursday during the Senate Judiciary Committee’s hearings.
“Mostly, we’re just feeling those people calling are certainly being triggered by all this conversation,” Karmen Carter of the Blue Bench said. “Whenever there’s media coverage, (calls) go up.”
The hearings heard testimony from Supreme Count nominee Brett Kavanaugh and Dr. Christine Blasey Ford.
Ford has accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault when they were teenagers at a house party in 1982.
Americans watched Thursday as the often emotional hearings were broadcast live on CBS and many other networks.
“What we say, to turn it off,” Carter said. “It’s not easy to do. It’s not easy to escape, with all the social media. That goes back to (victims) again feeling a loss of control.”
The Blue Bench serves Denver, Jefferson, Douglas, Adams, Araphaoe, Elbert, Broomfield, Gilpin and Lincoln counties.
On an average day, the organization receives six calls. Thursday, it answered 15.
“We want people to know they have somebody to talk to about this,” Carter said. “We’re just supporting each person with where they are.”
As painful as they were for some people, Carter added, the hearings placed an important issue in the front of the nation.
“We think it’s important these discussions are taking place. I have to maintain some hope these talks are making people think how they want to live their life and how they want to treat other people.”
The Senate Judiciary Committee voted Friday to advance the nomination to the full Senate.
The Blue Bench was formerly known as the Rape Assistance and Awareness Program. It’s hotline is 303 322-7273.