Lifetime’s ‘Surviving R. Kelly’ sequel leads to spike in calls to sexual assault hotline
The numbers are in and it appears the broadcast of Lifetime’s explosive docu-series “Surviving R. Kelly Part II: The Reckoning” led to a whopping 40% increase in calls Friday and Saturday to the National Sexual Assault Hotline,
These impressive stats come from the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) which administers the counseling resource. Lifetime actually partnered with the organization and made it a point to feature their phone number on-screen during the episodes that aired Thursday through Saturday.
“It’s amazing to know the documentary has encouraged important and necessary conversations to happen and we are extremely proud of our survivors for their courage, who by standing up for themselves, stand for so much more,” Brie Miranda Bryant, Lifetime’s senior vice president for unscripted programing, said in a statement Tuesday.
As we previously reported, this latest installment details everything that has happened since the original doc aired in 2019 and not just about the singer. There has been long-lasting and on-going impacts for the alleged victims. One woman had a seizure after she said she was confronted by someone from R. Kelly’s camp. Another has a hard time enjoying sex with her husband due to how traumatized she says she is from her sexual interactions with R. Kelly as a teen. Many of the women have experienced blowback from R. Kelly supporters.
Lifetime’s initial series last year sparked a 20% increase in calls to the hotline, which means the sequel has doubled those numbers.
“We often see the types of callers we get will follow the news cycle,” RAINN president Scott Berkowitz said at the time. “With the R. Kelly show, we were seeing more folks who are talking about childhood abuse.”
R. Kelly is currently in federal custody Chicago facing multiple charges against him in both Illinois and New York, including 10 counts of sexual abuse with minors. In December 2019, he was charged by the federal government for bribing a government employee to obtain a fake identification for the late singer Aaliyah for the purposes of getting married to her when she was just 15 years old.