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Pearsall city councilors and municipal staff joined Mayor Ben Briscoe and representatives of the Belong Agency and the Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of South Texas recently in witnessing the signing of proclamations dedicating April as both Child Abuse Prevention Month and Sexual Assault Awareness Month. The nationwide pledges for the public awareness drives include encouragement to support government, law enforcement, school, health care and civic organization efforts to intervene, to educate and to help prevent abuse. Promotional material, information on resources, emergency shelter for victims, safe reporting of abuse, access to care and counseling, and contact information for relevant law enforcement agencies as well as resources on how to discuss the issues with children are available through service agencies and advocacy groups. Mayor Briscoe encouraged public participation in the efforts to reduce instances of abuse in the community. (Courtesy photo)