Hollywood actress, Viola Davis has opened up on her personal experiences with sexual assault.
The "How to get away with murder" star while being honored at the Rape Foundation’s Annual Brunch in Beverly Hills said, "Myself, my mother, my sisters, my friend Rebecca, my friend from childhood, we all have one thing in common: We are all survivors of sexual assault in some way, shape or form."
"Listen, when I was young, there were so many men in the neighbourhood who gave you money if they could touch you. Going over to a friend’s house for a birthday party at the age of seven, there was always someone there who touched you.”
“My sister Danielle was 8 years old when she was on roller skates and went down to the corner store at 1 o’clock in the afternoon and was sexually assaulted in the aisles,” said Davis. “She told my mum right away – my mum ran down to the store. The store owner’s response was: ‘He does that to all the little girls.’
“My mum flagged down the police, and the perpetrator did pay,” she continued. “He paid. He was fined $10 a month. It’s over for him, but I’d like to redefine survivor.”
Opening up about her sister’s sexual assault struggles, "My sister is now a heroin addict, she’s a prostitute,” she said. “The friend of mine who’s a survivor, I call her a survivor because her 7-year-old daughter was taken from the backyard of her grandma’s house while playing in the middle of the day. They couldn’t find her for an entire day, and they finally found her sexually assaulted, strangled dead. So her mum, she’s surviving. It’s just that when she’s surviving, when she’s alive just having a meal, she has flashbacks – post-traumatic stress disorder.”
“I asked her how she gets through, she says: ‘I don’t know, it’s a nightmare. I pray to God,’” said Davis.