WHAT IS SEXUAL VIOLENCE? Sexual violence is any sexual activity committed by force against a person’s will.
WHAT IS SEXUAL VIOLENCE? “Sexual activity” can include anything from hugging to having sex. “By force” includes physically holding someone down, violence, weapons, coercion, manipulation, threatening, blackmail, and putting pressure on someone. “Against someone's will” means the person cannot give active consent. Saying “no” is not the only way for someone to indicate they don’t want to do something. Also, a person who is passed out, sleeping, or under the influence of alcohol or drugs cannot give active consent.
WHAT IS SAAM? The goal of SAAM is to raise awareness and prevent sexual violence. The awareness ribbon for sexual violence awareness and prevention is teal. The month of April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM).
GENERAL FACTS IN THE U. S. Nearly 1 in 5 women are raped at some point in their lifetime. About every 2 minutes, someone is sexually assaulted. More than 1 in 3 women and more than 1 in 4 men have experienced rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime. Approximately 80% of female victims experienced their first rape before the age of 25.
MYTH 1 Sexual assault victims provoke the attack by wearing provocative clothing.
FACT There are many things that a person can be attempting to convey by what he or she wears. They could be following the latest fashion trends or expressing their individuality. Whatever the intention might be, their choice of clothing does not act as consent for sex. Research shows that what someone wears has no effect on whether or not they were raped.
MYTH 2 Most sexual assaults are committed by strangers in dark, out-of-the-way places, like in an alley
FACT Familiar people and places are more dangerous. About 85% of sexual assaults are committed by someone the survivor knows. Over 50% of sexual assaults occur in the home. Sexual assaults are just as likely to occur during the daytime as at night.
MYTH 3 Once a person says they will have sex with someone, they can’t really change their mind. * Meaning, it doesn’t really count as rape if someone said yes initially and then said no.
FACT Everyone has the right to set limits on their sexual experiences. Everyone has the right to say NO at any time during a sexual encounter!!
MYTH 4 The motive for rape is sexual. Rape is the result of either uncontrollable sexual urges or a lack of sexual opportunities. (i.e. Lust; passion; men are so turned on they just can’t help themselves)
FACT The main motive for rape is to feel powerful and in control. Forcing someone to engage in sexual intercourse against their will is an act of violence and aggression. Sex is the weapon used to control and/or humiliate the victim. The majority of convicted rapists had consenting sexual partners.
FACT About 1 in 71 men are raped in their lifetime. Nearly 1 in 5 men have experienced some form of sexual violence other than rape at some point in their lifetime, such as being made to penetrate someone else or experiencing sexual coercion, unwanted sexual contact, or sexual harassment. Even in cases of sexual violence committed against men, the perpetrator is most often a heterosexual man.
HOW TO HELP A FRIEND (MORE INFO HERE) (MORE INFO HERE) Listen. Believe. Know local resources and encourage your friend to seek support. The Orange County Rape Crisis Center’s 24-Hour Help Line is always available at 1-866-WE LISTEN. Give yourself permission to seek support for yourself as well.
GET INVOLVED WITH THE ORANGE COUNTY RAPE CRISIS CENTER Support the Center by donating and coming to our events.donatingevents Volunteer at the Center. Volunteer Host a fundraiser for the Center. Host a fundraiser Talk to your children about safe touches and preventing violence. Request our Community Educators to present a program to your kids’ daycare, youth group, or sports team.present a program Request our Community Educators to present a program for adults to your PTA, book club, social club, church group, or office.present a program
OTHER WAYS TO HELP Check out the resources from the National Sexual Violence Resource Center. resources Talk to your friends about healthy relationships. Replace victim-blaming statements with statements of support. Educate yourself. Educate yourself Challenge rape myths and stereotypes. Speak up when you hear sexist language or someone downplaying the severity of sexual assault
24-Hour Help Line24-Hour Help Line: Our help line operates 24 hours a day, every day of the year. Trained staff and volunteers provide support for survivors of sexual violence and their loved ones. Support GroupsSupport Groups: Our support groups offer a safe space to talk to people with similar experiences. Our groups give survivors the opportunity to learn from one another and to support each other. Therapy ReferralsTherapy Referrals: We can provide referrals to help you find counseling in the community. Latino ServicesLatino Services: All our services are also offered in Spanish. (En español.) Community EducationCommunity Education: The Center offers educational programs for youth and adult groups, raising awareness about sexual violence and teaching prevention skills. SERVICES AT THE ORANGE COUNTY RAPE CRISIS CENTER