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Updated 10:00 AM October 25, 2004




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Consultant from hospital assists SAPAC and CAPS

An expert on survivor services for sexual assault victims will serve as a consultant to the vice president for student affairs during the implementation of changes at the Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center (SAPAC) and the office of Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS).

Lisa Scheiman, a certified nurse midwife who has served as the director of the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner/Sexual Assault Response Team program at University Hospital since 2001, will be a consultant as SAPAC and CAPS strengthen their services and as SAPAC shifts its counseling function to CAPS.

"Lisa will work with us to provide a resource for students, faculty and staff during the next several months as we work to strengthen our services at SAPAC and CAPS, and to ensure that we are meeting the needs of the community," says E. Royster Harper, vice president for student affairs.

Scheiman has served as a member of the Ann Arbor Mayor's Task Force in Increasing Safety for Women since 1996, and she has presented nationally on topics related to sexual abuse.

"She has an extensive background in sexual assault survivor services that also will make her a tremendously valuable resource to us during this transition," Harper says.

In the past, SAPAC has offered both crisis intervention and ongoing counseling to students, in addition to a full range of educational and training programs. It will continue to be the main contact for victims of sexual assault, harassment, stalking and domestic violence, but the recent changes shifted the counseling function to CAPS.

Since July 1, a SAPAC crisis line has been staffed by full-time professionals who are available directly to callers, rather than through an answering service. The number is (734) 936-3333.

Scheiman is interested in gathering input from faculty, staff and students to make sure the best possible services are available on campus.

So far, she says, the transition is going smoothly. "I've had a great response," Scheiman says. "People are interested in making the programs work well and making sure we meet the needs of the survivors."

Stephanie Pinder-Amaker, associate dean of students, says student response to the changes has been positive.

"We are especially pleased by the response of student survivors, and we believe the coordination of services between CAPS and SAPAC, particularly between the SAPAC direct services coordinator and the CAPS counselor, is working effectively," she says.

She adds that students appreciate the availability of a professional at the SAPAC crisis line. The volume of usage is consistent with past figures, she says.

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