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As much as we like to believe we are different or safer in Santa Barbara, our local statistics are consistent with state and national averages. Each year Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center responds to approximately 700 new cases.

  • “Queer and Trans Sexual Assault: A Youth Issue”
    SBRCC has a powerful new resource available for LGBTQ youth and their allies. The zine (a do-it-yourself magazine) is entitled “Queer and Trans Sexual Assault: A Youth Issue.” To view a PDF version of the zine, click here. To receive a hardcopy or printable version, please contact SBRCC via email.

  • SBRCC recognizes a difference between risk-reduction and prevention of sexual assault.
    Risk-reduction refers to actions that each of us can take as individuals to help keep ourselves safe in a violent world.
    Prevention represents the diverse steps we must take on a personal, institutional, and societal level to create a just, safe, and equitable world that is free from all forms of sexual violence.

    Click here for more information about ending sexual violence.

  • Sexual assault is a form of gender violence. Men are the vast majority of perpetrators and women are the majority of survivors. Studies show that men commit 98% of all sexual assaults.
  • 1.3 women in the U.S. are forcibly raped each minute. This translates to 78 per hour, 1,871 per day or 683,000 per year.
  • A study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institute of Justice found that males are victims in 15% of all sexual assaults.
  • In 80% of all rapes, the perpetrator is someone the survivor knows. 6 out of 10 sexual assaults occur in the survivor’s home or at the home of a friend, relative, or neighbor.
  • Sexual assault is the violent crime least often reported to law enforcement. Only 16% of rapes are ever reported to the police. False reporting is very rare.
  • In 80-90% of sexual assaults, the survivor and assailant were of the same race.
  • According to the First National Survey of Transgender Violence, 14% of respondents were survivors of rape or attempted rape.
  • One study found that 23% of lesbian and bisexual girls had experienced rape or attempted rape, compared to 6% of their heterosexual peers.
  • 83% of women and 32% of men with developmental disabilities have been sexually assaulted. 97-99% of abusers are known and trusted by the survivor.
  • 54% of female survivors were under 18 at the time of the first rape, and 83% were under 25.

    U.S. Department of Justice (1994, 1997, 1998, 2000)
    National Victim Center (1992)
    National Institute of Justice and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (1998, 2000)
    GenderPAC (1997)
    Journal of School Social Work (2001)
    Disabled Women’s Network Canada (1991)
    Sexuality and Disability (1991)
  • Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center is dedicated to educating the community about the realities of sexual assault. Our culture often condones sexual assault by excusing the perpetrator and perpetuating myths that blame the survivor. Exposing these myths is an important step toward eliminating sexual assault(1).
  • MYTH: Rape is uncommon.
    REALITY: Rape is the most frequently committed violent crime in the U.S. 1.3 women are raped in the U.S. each minute. This translates to 78 per hour, 1,871 per day, or 683,000 per year(2).
  • MYTH: There are many false rape reports. Many women make false rape accusations because they changed their mind after having sex, or in order to get revenge on someone.
    REALITY: False rape reports are very rare and are not more common than for any other felony crime. In reality, sexual assault is the most underreported violent crime in the U.S.(3) 84% of rapes are never reported to the police(4).
  • MYTH: Sexual assault is an impulsive crime of passion and lust.
    REALITY: Rape is not sex. Sexual assault uses sex as a weapon to dominate, humiliate, and punish victims. Perpetrators plan most sexual assaults in advance. Sexual violence is not just an individual or relationship problem, but stems from institutional sexism, racism, heterosexism, and other forms of oppression.
  • MYTH: Only young, attractive women are sexually assaulted.
    REALITY: Sexual assault is a crime of power and control, not sexual attraction, and perpetrators often choose victims whom they perceive as vulnerable. Sexual assault survivors include people of all ages, gender identities, sexual orientations, races, classes, abilities, styles of dress, education, and employment.

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