Earlier this week, CNN reported on the high rates of sexual assault on cruise ships and the difficulty in reporting and prosecuting sex crimes.
The story also discussed the introduction of the “2009 Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act, which requires the cruise industry to publicly report crimes and improve safety on board. It mandates peepholes and security latches in cabins. This week, several victims of cruise crimes will meet with senators to discuss the issue.”
In addition, Laurie Dishman was featured in the story. Dishman, is a member of the CALCASA Speaker’s Bureau, was a keynote speaker at Denim Day ‘07, and has been advocating to change cruise industry policies.

Laurie Dishman, 38, testified before Congress that she was raped aboard a Royal Caribbean ship three years ago. She said cruise staff instructed her to gather evidence, so she and a friend went to the cabin where the assault occurred and piled her clothes and bed sheets into plastic bags they were given.
“We didn’t know what we were doing,” says Dishman. She said she was later told by authorities there wasn’t enough evidence to prosecute a criminal case. “It makes me frustrated looking back that the cruise lines didn’t handle evidence properly.”

In early 2008, Dishman’s suit against Royal Caribbean was settled.
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