After discussing the problems and severity of sexual assault as a whole, there are also “sub-issues” of this topic that need attention too. One being that there are certain groups more susceptible to being raped or sexually assaulted.
The first group to note are Native American women, who are 2.5 times more likely to experience sexual assault than any other ethnic group in the United States. On average, Native American women ages 12 and older experience 5,900 sexual assaults every year. Breaking that number down further, 41% of the assaults were committed by a stranger, 34% by an acquaintance, and 25% by a family member. In a study done by the Department of Justice, it showed that of over 2,000 women surveyed, 56 percent of the Native American women have experienced sexual violence. (Rosay, 2016) Another article notes that Charon Asetoyer, the CEO of the Native American Women’s Health Education Resource Center, was approached by a young mother on Sioux Reservation, and asked “What do I tell my daughter when she is raped?” (Hope, 2017) Asetoyer was not asked if she were to be raped, but when, which is extremely disheartening that this has become the reality of Native American women.
The LGBTQ community is another group that faces sexual assault at a higher rate, when compared to straight people. Looking at the numbers, approximately 1 in 8 lesbian women, and nearly half of bisexual women have experienced rape in their lifetime. When you broaden the definition of sexual assault, one can assume those numbers increase. About 4 in 10 gay men, and nearly half of bisexual men have experienced sexual assault as well, which when comparing to heterosexual men, is significantly higher. Transgender individuals are the most at risk, when looking at who is most likely to be affected by sexual assault in the LGBTQ community. The numbers show that 64% of transgender people have experienced sexual assault in their lifetime. (National Sexual Violence Research Center, 2015) When looking at these numbers, it also might be worthy of nothing that these statistics are from 2015 research. While still relevant, it seems the world has gotten a lot more hateful and cruel towards minorities in these last few years. I would be interested in seeing a study done now, to see how the numbers compare.
Lastly, when comparing men and women in general, women are significantly at higher risk of being a victim of rape and other forms of sexual assault. Men are certainly susceptible to being victims as well, and it is important to increase awareness of that, but when looking at the numbers, about 1 in 5 women have experienced completed or attempted rape during her lifetime, while about 1 in 33 men have experienced that. (Victims of Sexual Violence: Statistics, n.d.) Young women are especially at risk, with women between the ages of 18-24 being most at risk. College students in that age group are 3 times as likely to experience sexual violence, when compared to women in general. Women of that age group, who are not enrolled in college are 4 times as likely to experience sexual violence.
Hope, N. (2017). Sexual Assault: A Horrifying Reality for Native American Girls. https://blog.nativehope.org/sexual-assault-a-horrifying-reality-for-native-american-girls.
National Sexual Violence Research Center. (2015). (rep.). Sexual Violence & Individuals Who Identify as LGBTQ. Retrieved from https://www.nsvrc.org/sites/default/files/Publications_NSVRC_Research-Brief_Sexual-Violence-LGBTQ.pdf
Rosay, A. B. (2016). (rep.). Violence Against American Indian and Alaska Native Women and Men. U.S. Department of Jusice. Retrieved from https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/249736.pdf
Victims of Sexual Violence: Statistics. RAINN. https://www.rainn.org/statistics/victims-sexual-violence.