Sexual Assault Prevention

Background on Sexual Assault Prevention

woman listening to musicSexual violence (SV) is any sexual act that is forced against someone's will. These acts can be physical, verbal or psychological. Sexual Assault Prevention Intervention MICA focuses on physical sexual violence, including rape, incest and sexual touching.  Anyone can be a victim of sexual assault, but the majority of victims are female.  Other populations at risk include older adults, children and the disabled. In most cases of sexual assault, the victim has been violated by someone that he or she knows (e.g., friend, neighbor, coworker, family member, teacher).

Reduction in the risk of sexual assault can be achieved by increasing individual and community knowledge and awareness of sexual assault. Increases in safer practices in everyday life (e.g., avoiding unsafe situations) and in social situations (e.g. avoiding excessive drinking, being aware of surroundings, using a buddy system) can also help reduce the risk of becoming a victim of sexual assault.

Victims of sexual assault are often referred to as survivors, and each survivor experiences different reactions to the assault. Some reactions are short in duration, while others may be lifelong. Most commonly, survivors may experience posttraumatic stress disorder and flashbacks. Some survivors experience changes in personality or even thoughts of suicide. Specific intervention strategies, tools and resources to address commonly associated risk factors and help individuals who have been victimized cope are provided in the Sexual Assault Prevention Intervention MICA topic.

For background information on sexual assault prevention, please visit the following websites:


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