Susan Vickers

Having spent a decade building a law center dedicated to advancing the legal rights of rape survivors, I believe the core problem confronting rape survivors in the United States is a cultural one: the majority of men and women in this nation still (40 years after the sexual revolution and 40 years after the start of the anti-rape movement) do not fundamentally accept that all women have the right to say no to sex, and conversely, yes to sex -- when, where, and with whom they want. The nation is still not clear where the line is between ‘bad sex’ and ‘rape’, between ‘someone who deserved it’ and ‘someone who did not deserve it’, between an ‘innocent man’ and a ‘rapist’. Achieving clarity on these issues, and helping the nation truly understand and value female sexual autonomy is the challenge of CounterQuo.

—Susan Vickers

Susan H. Vickers, founder and former Executive Director of the Victim Rights Law Center, Inc., began her groundbreaking legal work with sexual assault victims in 1995. Ms. Vickers was the driving force behind building the innovative legal practice of the Victim Rights Law Center from 1997-2007, which advised over 540 sexual assault victims in 2007 on a myriad range of their civil and criminal legal rights. Ms. Vickers has presented both domestically and internationally on the subject of the legal needs of rape victims; she has appeared in numerous media outlets on the subject, ranging from CNN to USA Today; Ms. Vickers also served as the Editor-in-Chief of “Beyond the Criminal Justice System: Using the Law to Help Restore the Lives of Sexual Assault Victims: A Practical Guide for Attorneys and Advocates," 2007 (available for download at www.victimrights.org) and as author of other legal and popular publications.

Ms. Vickers has won several awards for her legal work on behalf of sexual assault victims, including Kaufman Public Interest Awards from Harvard Law School, the 2007 National Award for Outstanding Response to and Prevention of Sexual Violence by the National Sexual Violence Resource Center and the 2007 Community Advocate Award by the Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance. Ms. Vickers is a graduate of Duke University and Harvard Law School. She currently consults on matters related to the legal rights of sexual assault victims.

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