42+ hour walk honored 42 million survivors of child sexual abuse
Senator Wilton Simpson and other state leaders recently joined Lauren’s Kids Founder and CEO State Senator Lauren Book to kick off the start of the “42 Hours for 42 Million” advocacy walk at the Florida Capitol. Legislators, state leaders, survivors, advocates and community members joined Senator Book in a 42+ hour continuous walk to honor the more than 42 million survivors of child sexual abuse who live in the United States. The walk took place on the plaza level of the Florida Capitol in Tallahassee with a treadmill donated by Premier Health & Fitness Center. Senator Book, a tireless advocate and child sexual abuse survivor, walked through much of tonight.
“I know all too well what survivors are up against – the feelings of shame and guilt that are not ours to carry,” explained Senator Book. “We are here today to say that it’s OK to tell, it’s OK to heal, and to show communities that together, we can protect our children and prevent sexual abuse.”
Among the other Florida leaders participating in the event were Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner Nikki Fried, Senator Tom Wright, as well as advocates from the Florida Council Against Sexual Violence, and local law enforcement officers.
“Florida is committed to being a state that protects children and families, that supports survivors, and that punishes predators within the fullest extent of the law,” said Senate President Designate, Senator Wilton Simpson.
During both nights of the event, Florida’s old capitol was lit in teal – the color associated with sexual assault awareness.
The second annual “42 Hours for 42 Million” walk followed Lauren Book and Lauren’s Kids’ eight-year “Walk in My Shoes” journey across Florida, which has welcomed advocates, community leaders, allies, survivors and more to walk 1,500 miles from Tallahassee to Key West from 2010 through 2018.
For more information about the “42 Hours for 42 Million”, please visit LaurensKids.org/42-Hours.