Survivor advocates have a critical role to play in strengthening corrections facilities’ response to sexual abuse of people in their custody. Under the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) standards, incarcerated survivors must have access to accompaniment by an outside advocate during investigatory interviews. Unfortunately, many facilities are not making investigatory accompaniment available, and instead insist that advocates’ role must be limited to providing emotional support via hotline and letter, and during forensic sexual assault exams. Making matters worse, this failure to offer accompaniment is not being flagged in PREA audits.  

This workshop will help advocates become more involved in supporting survivors during investigations, while also giving them strategies to share their concerns with auditors. Experts from Just Detention International (JDI) and the national PREA Resource Center (PRC) will help advocates understand the PREA standards related to their role and how they can give survivors they help and support they need and deserve. Participants will learn strategies for working with corrections officials and auditors who lack awareness around the role of advocates or are resistant to involving them. Panelists will share tailored resources, provide strategies for overcoming common scenarios, and work with participants to troubleshoot challenges and engage in institutional advocacy around facility investigations and audits.


Kris Mady, Jessica Seipel, Erica Gammill

Area of Focus

Detention – Advocacy in Lockdown