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Councilmen Jamie Harris, David Palmer, Gary Cummings and Arthur Elliott and Mayor David Grissom mark the importance of April as Sexual Assault Awareness and Child Abuse Prevention Month, with Tina Irons, who serves as Victims' Services coordinator for One Place of the Shoals.

Council promotes April for sexual assault awareness

At the Russellville City Council meeting April 15, the council passed a resolution to recognize April 2019 as Sexual Assault Awareness and Child Abuse Prevention Month.

The resolution points out, “National statistics show 1 in 5 women and 1 in 71 men will be raped at some point. Children are most at risk for sexual assault with 1 in 6 boys and 1 in 4 girls being assaulted before 18. In addition to the immediate physical and emotional costs, sexual assault may have long-term consequences, including post-traumatic stress, substance abuse, depression, eating disorders, homelessness and suicide. Community organizations, educators, law enforcement and health professions should be recognized for their work in preventing sexual assault, treating survivors and prosecuting perpetrators.”

One Place of the Shoals is a local resource for those in need of crisis care services as victims of domestic violence, adult rape, sexual assault, child sexual and physical abuse and elder abuse. Victims’ Services coordinator Tina Irons attended the meeting.

One Place can be reached by calling 256-284-7600 or visiting

The council discussed plans to increase the safety of the Highway 43 and Gandy Street intersection and voted to move forward with the next steps: to add a concrete barrier in the middle of the median so as to direct the flow of traffic correctly.

Councilmembers agreed this action is called for because of accidents that have taken place there. The initial barrier might be temporary in order to assess the placement before a permanent barrier is installed

Chris Ozbirn, Bicentennial Committee chairperson and director of the Franklin County Archives, spoke about an oak tree that will be planted at the Franklin County Archives in Veterans’ Park April 23 at 5 p.m. This will be the 100th anniversary of the oak tree planted in 1919 in honor of the 21 men from Franklin County killed in World War I. The original tree was placed at the intersection of Lawrence and Jackson and died after a few years.

Ozbirn also said there will be pioneer demonstrations at the Canteen one Saturday per month, May through August, as part of continuing bicentennial celebrations. Dates of the demonstrations will be May 4, June 8, July 13 and Aug. 10, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Other actions taken included: approving request for FAA approval of agreement for transfer of entitlements; approving the parks and recreation softball contract; accepting letter of resignation of Beverly Harvey from the Riverbend Board of Directors; and approving a request from the Russellville City Schools softball team to waive the rental fee at the A.W. Todd Centre May 23.