White House launches challenge to create anti-sexual assault app

By Kase Wickman
Sunday, July 17, 2011 21:40 EDT
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The Apple iPhone slogan and refrain of smartphone users worldwide — “there’s an app for that” — will soon be true of sexual assault prevention as well. The White House, the Department of Health and Human Services and Vice President Joe Biden launched a joint challenge that is hoped to reveal a clever way of tamping sexual assaults.

The “Apps Against Abuse” challenge encourages developers to create a smartphone app that will enable people to stay in touch with each other and update their whereabouts, in the hope that a technological buddy system will prevent dangerous situations.

“Consistent with the Office of the Vice President’s focus on the high rates of dating violence and sexual assault violence committed against young women, this developer’s challenge encourages the creation of innovative applications to help young adults prevent violence and abuse,” the pitch on the challenge site reads. “The application envisioned will offer individuals a way to connect with trusted friends in real-time to prevent abuse or violence from occurring.”

The deadline for sending in apps is October 17, and a winner will be announced October 31.

Creative Commons image via flickr user Arty Smokes.

(h/t: GOOD)

Kase Wickman
Kase Wickman
Kase Wickman is a reporter for Raw Story. She holds a journalism degree from Boston University and grew up in Eugene, OR. Her work has been featured in The Boston Globe, Village Voice Media, The Christian Science Monitor, The Houston Chronicle and on NPR, among others. She lives in New York City and tweets from @kasewickman.
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