The Santa Barbara County Commission for Women is starting a free monthly virtual Town Hall series modeled after its award-winning Women Speak Up forum. In recognition of Sexual Assault Awareness Month in April, the second Town Hall in the series is a pre-recorded conversation set for release at noon April 28.

The conversation can be accessed in the Commission for Women‘s Facebook page.

The conversation, titled The Work Continues: Ending Sexual Assault in Our Community, includes speakers Sandra Henriquez, CEO of VALOR US (formerly California Coalition to End Sexual Assault); Joyce Howerton, former mayor of Lompoc and co-founder of the North County Rape Crisis and Child Protection Center; and Nancy G. Weiss, nonprofit consultant and former staff member at Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center (now Standing Together to End Sexual Assault).

The event will be moderated by Santa Barbara County Commission for Women, Arcelia Sencion and Alison Wales.

Attendees can expect to receive links to resources and programs and a call to action to get involved in advocacy for legislative support on issues relating to violence against women. 

The monthly series will focus on topics identified by constituents as the top issues affecting women in their communities since the pandemic began. Notifications about future sessions will be posted on the Commission for Women website

Appointed by the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors, the Commission for Women is an advisory group that promotes the well-being, equity, and equal status of women. Formed in 1973, the commission is composed of a diverse group of women who are active community members representing the five supervisorial districts.

To help women in need, the commission may collaborate with other agencies and commissions; facilitate, recognize and recommend programs; gather and disseminate information; conduct public meetings, and advise the Board of Supervisors.