Rape & Sexual Assault
If you are in immediate danger, or in need of medical attention please call 911, or go to an emergency room.
Sexual Violence and LGBT People
Rape and sexual assault can happen to anyone, regardless of their sex, gender, race, class, age, size, appearance, or sexual orientation, what they look like. They are violent crimes used to exert power, humiliate, and control.
- "Sex" requires your consent.
- "Rape" and "Sexual Assault" are violent crimes and are motivated by anger, hatred, and aggression. Being forced to have unprotected sex or to engage in more sexual activity than you had wanted also constitutes rape or sexual assault. People of all genders can commit sexual assault.
- No one asks to be raped. Even if you picked someone up or were already engaged in sexual activity, you always have the right to say no.
- Laws regarding rape and sexual assault can be very confusing, especially if the survivor is male or the attacker is female. Legal definitions for what happened may not match our definitions. See local statutes for laws governing sexual assault and rape where you live. If there is an AVP in your area they may be able to help you understand these laws (insert link to NCAVP list here). While legal definitions vary, NCAVP defines sexual assault and rape in the following ways:
- If you could not say no because you were drunk, high, or unconscious, or have a disability, it is still considered rape or sexual assault. If you had your boundaries violated in a “scene” or your “safe words” were not respected, it is still considered rape or sexual assault. If are a sex worker and someone forced you to do something you did not agree to, it is still considered rape or sexual assault.
Sexual violence can happen in the context of intimate partner violence or as part of anti-LGBT hate violence.
- Often batterers will use sexual violence as a tool to maintain power and control in a relationship where domestic violence (also called intimate partner violence) exists. This can be in the form of sexual assault or rape including, attacking a survivors genitals, touching parts of the survivor’s body which are off limits, denying sexual activity or shaming the survivor about their sexuality. This is a very powerful tool of abuse and is usually used in conjunctions with other forms of intimate partner abuse. For more information, please see the section on domestic violence (insert like to DV section here).
- Sexual assault or rape can also be part of an anti-LGBT hate violence attack. Many times people who are choosing targets based on perceptions about sexual orientation or gender identity will take out their hatred by attacking our sexuality in this most direct manner. As sexual violence is about power and control, women or transgender people are often sexually assaulted or raped in the name of attempting to turn someone straight or put them in their place regarding their gender.
If you are a survivor of sexual violence remember, it is not your fault and you are not alone. Please see the list of NCAVP member organizations to locate an agency that may be able to offer you help and support click here .