Sexual violence happens every day in communities all over the world and includes a range of actions and behaviors including rape, child sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, and sexual harassment. The history of Sexual Assault Awareness Month goes back to the 1970s, but the month of April became the official month in the 1990s. The statistics are staggering and sobering (source http://www.nsvrc.org):
- Nearly 1 in 5 women in the United States have experienced rape or attempted rape some time in their lives (Black et al., 2011).
- In the United States, 1 in 71 men have experienced rape or attempted rape (Black et al., 2011).
- An estimated 32.3% of multiracial women, 27.5% of American Indian/Alaska Native women, 21.2% of non-Hispanic black women, 20.5% of non-Hispanic white women, and 13.6% of Hispanic women were raped during their lifetimes (Black et al., 2011).
- Nearly 1 in 2 women and 1 in 5 men have experienced sexual violence victimization other than rape at some point in their lifetime (Black et al., 2011).
This year, the SAAM campaign is Engaging New Voices. The focus is on involving coaches, faith leaders, parents, Greek Life, and bystanders with preventing sexual assault.
What can you do to help prevent sexual assault? RAINN offers these safety prevention resources.