Glamour Mag: Meet Two Women Leading the Charge Against Sexual Abuse

Survive. Thrive. Repeat. Those words titled a segment of the Glamour Women of the Year Summit on Sunday and they epitomized the spirit of two women named by L’Oreal and Glamour as Heroes Among Us honorees. The segment was opened by singer-songwriter and activist Halsey performing a powerful poem, “Inconvenient Women.” In it, she reminded women not to be silent—but to be brave, opinionated … in a word, inconvenient. Moments later, two such inconvenient women sat down with Glamour books editor Elizabeth Egan to discuss their personal experiences with sexual abuse and trafficking—and how they now help survivors channel their voices, find justice, and live their fullest, best lives.

Lauren Book: Lauren’s Kids

 

In late October, as she was boarding a plane, Lauren Book got a phone call from her husband. He was calling to say FBI agents were at their Florida home. The democratic state senator, whose recent work has included putting together comprehensive gun violence prevention legislation for Florida, was named on a list of targets drawn up by pipe bomber Cesar Sayoc. “He had done internet searches about where we lived and my voting records,” she says. The incident gave her pause, “but you cannot allow those things to deter you.” Book has never been one to run from a fight.

A survivor of horrific sexual abuse at the hands of her childhood nanny, from age 11 to 16, Book has dedicated much of her life to fighting sexual abuse and helping victims. The statistics in the United States are grim: 1 in 3 girls and 1 in 5 boys will be the victim of sexual abuse before they turn 18. But what she and the organization she founded to educate and advocate for survivors, Lauren’s Kids, want you to know is, 95 percent of cases are preventable through education and awareness.