Nassar abuse survivor attends SOTU, urges Congress to strengthen protections

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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) -- Michigan’s Amanda Thomashow said she was overwhelmed by her invitation to Tuesday’s State of the Union address.

As a sexual assault survivor, she said she’s now advocating for others.

Thomashow said of attending the address, “I was there to represent anybody who has ever been a victim of gender-based violence.”

Thomashow filed a title nine complaint in 2014 while a student at Michigan State University.

She said she didn’t want to be re-victimized by going through a police cross examination, but said she knew she needed to tell someone Larry Nassar abused her.

She said, “I wanted to protect myself while also protecting others, which is why I chose Title IX as the way to report him.”

Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin (D-MI) invited Thomashow to D.C., and said her leadership created real change.

Slotkin said, “Amanda is an amazing survivor advocate, a reason that so many of us know about what happened at Michigan State, and I just thought it was important to make the point in front of the senior leadership of this country that women won’t be silenced.”

Thomashow said lawmakers need to continue to strengthen federal laws that make it easier for sexual assault victims to file a complaint.

She also said not enough has been done to prevent widespread sexual abuse, like that from Nassar.

She said, “I think that right now, with where we are, something like that could happen again.”

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