Counselor: Victims' statements in Nassar trial part of healing p - WNEM TV 5

Counselor: Victims' statements in Nassar trial part of healing process

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BAY CITY, MI (WNEM) -

More than 250 women have come forward accusing disgraced sports doctor Larry Nassar of abuse.

"It's probably unique that this many have come forward," said Jeanne Yonke, counseling services program manager at Bay Area Womens Center.

She said it has more to do with the justice and healing of the survivors than the abuser.

"Sexual assault is a crime of taking the power from someone and using your authority as he did to have power over his victims. It's so important for people to be empowered to have the chance if they want to stand up and tell their story," Yonke said.

She said it can actually be therapeutic for victims who have been through a traumatic event, but said it takes courage.

"Even in therapy some of the things we do is to have them tell their story. It's very much a part of the healing process," Yonke said.

When it comes to the incident involving the survivors' father in court on Friday, Yonke said she sees it as a relatively normal reaction.

"Parents, they just want to make someone pay for the hurt that they have done. The trauma that they have caused to their child," Yonke said.

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