April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and Child Abuse Prevention Month.
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and Child Abuse Prevention Month. Both of these issues run deep and wide in every community. Millions of cases are reported per year and we know many more go unreported. Victims of assault may choose to not report due to shame, drug use, not having a clear memory of the event, or because they have been threatened.
- More than 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men experience sexual assault in their lifetimes
- The most common age of sexual assault in between the ages 12 and 21
- Rural areas tend to have more unreported assaults and higher rates of child abuse
What is considered sexual assault?
- Any sexual contact or activity done without consent, meaning the person did not agree. A person cannot consent to sex if they are heavily intoxicated (drunk or high) or unconscious. Children and teens under 18 also cannot consent to sexual activity.
What are the consequences of sexual assault?
- Health issues – post-traumatic stress disorder, reproductive, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, and sexual health problems
- Behavioral issues – more likely to smoke, abuse alcohol, use drugs, and engage in risky sexual activity
- Financial impact – may impact employment, time away from work, poor job performance or unable to work at all. Each rape has an accumulated cost $122,461 over the victim’s lifetime
If you have experienced sexual assault, there is help and support. Call your local law enforcement, advocacy center or sexual assault hotline. In Valley County, we have a Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) and see patients of all ages locally at Cascade Medical Center. Medical care, treatment and forensic exams are all done locally with the local support of Rose Advocates for continued support.
Valley County Sheriff (208) 382-5160
Rose Advocates (208) 382-5310
Elevated Forensic Nursing (509) 378-1841
Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) (800) 656-4673
National Suicide Hotline (800) 273-8255
About the Author
Teresa Donnahoo owns Elevated Forensic Nursing and is a practicing forensic nurse living in Valley County, Idaho. She got her start in forensics in CA practicing in LA and Orange counties with Forensic Nurse Specialists. Teresa lives with her husband and 3 children, 3 fur babies and 2 turtles. She enjoys any activity on or in the lake and creating art projects in her spare time.
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