News & Events

Rape aggression defense program comes to the MNA

The MNA recently hosted a Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) Program—for members and non-members—through the Boston Police Department’s community services department. The instructors were community service officers Frank Hughes and Raquel Vega, and they trained participants in techniques to prevent a possible assault through risk awareness and recognition, as well as how to react and deal with aggression.

The program’s overall training objectives included:

  • Obtaining knowledge of statistics regarding sexual assault, rape and abduction
  • Obtaining basic knowledge of legal limitations of self-defense
  • Learning self-defense options that are both lethal or non-lethal

In addition, the program included a nine-hour physical component on basic self-defense moves. The aim was to teach participants that, on first blush, what seems physically impossible to accomplish soon becomes possible via the RAD training drills.

The program itself was physical and thought-provoking, and it challenged participants to respond in ways they were not normally socialized or conditioned to act on a daily basis. That was the virtue of this program: it truly showed the students that in order to defend themselves it will be through the use of behaviors they usually don’t use or exhibit.

This is one of the reasons why assault rates are as high as they are today: because the victim is taken by surprise, with no way to defend or respond to the situation. The RAD program offered viable options for individuals to use during an assault or aggressive attack. It was not pleasant—but it is a reality that needs to be considered by many in today’s world.

If you would like to receive more information about this program or would like to have it brought to your facility, contact

Chris Pontus