Sexual Assault Prevention

  • It has been reported that an average of 207,754 victims are sexually assaulted/raped each year in the United States. Which means, one person is sexually assaulted every two minutes. The World Health Organization estimates victims of sexual assault are three times more likely to suffer from depression, six times more likely to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, 13 times more likely to abuse alcohol, 26 times more likely to abuse drugs, and four times more likely to contemplate suicide than those who have not experienced sexual violence. Experts say prevention is the key to end sexual violence. Here are ways to prevention sexual violence:

    1. Stay alert at all times. Be aware of your surroundings. Avoid distractions when walking around town, such as wearing headphones or using your cell phone while walking.

    2. Pay attention to your consumption of alcohol and don't use drugs. The majority of sexual assaults happen when the victim is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Substance use can lower your inhibitions and make you increasingly vulnerable to being attacked.

    3. Use the Buddy System. Get to know your peers before trusting them. More often than not, sexual violence victims are assaulted by someone they know, whether it is a partner, a familiar friend or family member, or a new acquaintance. Let them know what you're willing and not willing to do. Travel with friends and if this is not possible, let someone know when you are leaving and where you are going. Always leave with the same friends you traveled with and agree in advance not to leave any one behind.

    4. Trust your instincts. If you feel uneasy, there is usually good reason for it. Be able to identify your feelings so you can make choices that can help keep yourself safe.

    5. Know the services available to you. Have important numbers saved in your phone such 911 and your local police department.

    Resource Phone Numbers

    AIDS Testing (Anonymous Testing)


    Cattaraugus Health Department


    Child Abuse Prevention (Info & Parent Helpline)


    Counseling Center (Salamanca)


    Department of Social Services


    Family Violence/Rape Crisis


    Gay & Lesbian Youth Services


    Interfaith Caregivers


    Mental Health & Family Support Services


    Missing Children’s Hotline


    Olean General Hospital


    Suicide Prevention Hotline


    Teen Pregnancy Hotline


    WCA Hospital


    WNY Runaway Hotline


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