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6 • the mississippi link

April 12 - 18, 2012

Breast cancer

Women shoes

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within the 65 counties served apply for grants. Grant awardees offer uninsured or underinsured women free mammograms and diagnostic exams, medical treatment for qualified breast cancer patients who cannot afford careincluding surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. Support services and education about the disease are also important. Over the past four years, the Central Mississippi Steel Magnolias Affiliate has raised more than 1.5 million dollars in grant money. Fortenberry said the grants help save lives. “Free mammograms for women without health insurance, free breast screenings for women without access to a physician -We feel like there is a gap that needs to be filled, especially in our rural areas. Grants help provide those services, provide earlier detection.” In the last year and a half in Mississippi, 958 women had mammograms, 468 received clinical breast exams and 24 ultra sounds were performed. Nearly 15,000 we educated about breast

against sexual assault by literally walking in high heels to make a statement about the criticalness of this issue. This April, the 2012 SAAM campaign, focuses on promoting healthy sexuality to prevent sexual violence. “Sexual violence crosses all ages, races, economic and social [lines]; it does not matter. Everyone is affected - women, children and men,” said MCASA’s Executive Director Levette Johnson. “… as we all know: ‘information is knowledge and knowledge is power,’ and if we use that power, we can educate everyone.” Johnson pointed out that it often takes nearly a lifetime for a victim to be healed from a sexual assault. Hinds County Sheriff Tyrone Lewis, who participated in the event said, “I encourage the public to get more involved in educating ourselves about this problem. Sexual assault is a crime against a human being - women, children and men. In my line of work, we see it happening a lot among the younger generation between the ages of 15-25. There is no respect for the other individual’s life.” Lewis said he thinks the awareness and education efforts definitely need to impact that age group. While the issue continues to be a serious state and national problem, State Attorney General Jim Hood, during the opening ceremony, shared some positive news about Mississippi. Four years ago, Mississippi was the fifth worst state in the nation in in-

Young and staffer prepare registration bags. cancer. Interim Executive Director Catherine Young said she’s looking for even bigger support as the message gets out that local women’s lives are being saved. “We have so much support from all aspects of the community because breast cancer is a disease that can touch anyone. Most people have someone in their family, at their office or in their neighborhood that has been affected,” Young

The Mississippi Link


Volume 18 • Number 25 April 12 - 18, 2012

© copyright 2012. All rights reserved. Chairman.................................................L. Socrates Garrett Publisher.................................................Jackie Hampton Managing Editor.....................................Othor Cain Editor.......................................................Gail M. Brown Religion Editor........................................Daphne Higgins Photographers........................................Kevin Robinson & Jay Johnson Graphics..................................................Marcus Johnson Writer.......................................................Monica Land Member:

said. “Working together creates more survivors.” If you would like to support the Central Mississippi Steel Magnolias Race for the Cure, you can still form a team by visiting their website at The registration fee is $30 for adults and $20 for children. Onsite regisatration is available Saturday morning up to race time. The race begins at 8:30 am in front of the Old Capitol on State Street.

The Mississippi Link [USPS 017224] is published weekly by The Mississippi Link, Inc. Offices located at 2659 Livingston Road, Jackson, MS 39213. Mailing address is P.O. Box 11307, Jackson, MS 39283-1307 or e-mail us at:; Please visit our website at: Phone: (601) 896-0084, Fax 896-0091, out of state 1-800-748-9747. Periodical Postage Rate Paid at Jackson, MS. Deadline: The deadline for submitting items to be considered for publication is Tuesday at 10 a.m. Subscriptions are $32 per year; $64 for two years or $96 for three years. Postmaster: Send all address changes to The Mississippi Link, P.O. Box 11307, Jackson, MS 39283-1307. Advertising: For all advertising information, please call (601) 896-0084. The Mississippi Link accepts no responsibility for unsolicited materials and in general does not return them to sender. Manuscripts and photographs submitted for publication are welcome by The Mississippi Link, but no responsibility can be taken for sources considered to be authoritative, because the publication cannot guarantee their accuracy. Reproduction or use, without permission, of editorial or graphic content, is prohibited.

cidents of domestic homicide - “primarily where a husband kills his wife.” After working with the Legislature, Partners in Education, groups like MCASA to educate the communities and to pass legislation, Hood said, “now, Mississippi has gone from the fifth worst state in domestic homicide to No. 22. You see mainly those people who help to make this happen are here, which means a small group of people can make a tremendous impact.” “We’ve found that 73 percent of little boys who have seen their father beat their mothers would do the exact, same thing,” Hood added. “It’s learned behavior, so you can change it.” He said counseling and raising awareness have had major impacts in making a difference in domestic violence. WLBT News Anchor Maggie, another one of the speakers, said, “We have forgotten the importance of compassion and concern. Compassion and concern together brings us together and help us stand together. And, when we stand together on any issue; I don’t care what it is, when we’ve come together united, we’ve been able to make a difference in the lives of those who suffer. That’s what today is about - concern, compassion and taking action.” MCASA also recognized Vicksburg police retiree Sgt. Douglas Arp and Jackson resident Eva Jones for their outstanding support and advocacy in the fight against sexual violence around the state. Many survivors or over-

comers of sexual violence were also present at the event, and they were treated to limousine rides as the men walk. Among those survivors was Watani Salvage, who shared her story: “When we think about sexual assault, we usually think about grown women. People who are big, small and they already have their foundation in life. Think about that same violence perpetrated toward a child on a daily basis, three times a week, from my own childhood - I was raped my entire childhood, from the age of 8 or 9 up. And when I was finally able to break away, my foundation had been stripped from me. I didn’t know who I was; how to feel, I was always manipulated. So, I didn’t know how to think for myself. “But I am a survivor, because I’ve been able to hold on to my source. God is my foundation now. I’ve been able to write two books out of that. I’m working on two more books for children to let them know that they are strong; they have a voice. And, we need to listen to our kids when they want to tell somebody that something has happened to them. We need to believe them and back them up.” More than 100 people gathered for this annual event. For more information about SAAM visit www.nsvrc. org/saam For more information about the Mississippi Coalition Against Sexual Assault, call (888 987-9011 or (601) 948-0555.