National Indian Country Clearinghouse on Sexual Assault
Unique Considerations

 

Each Victims Experience of Sexual Violence is different.

 

Not every victim presents with the same needs.  This tab addresses some of the unique considerations affecting many American Indian/Alaska Native victims and contains information on topics ranging from the sexual abuse of elders to sexual violence against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered, Questioning and Intersex (GLBTQI) victims. 

 

The Spousal Rape tab discusses intimate partner violence, the intersection of sexual and domestic violence, and laws relating to marital rape. Under the current laws of many jurisdictions, spouses can be convicted for sexual violence committed against their partners.  This tab has resources addressing situations where the victim is married to the perpetrator.

 

The Elders tab contains resources discussing the unique consider-ations of elder American Indian/Alaska Native victims of sexual violence.  For example, the majority of perpetrators of sexual violence against elders are the victim’s’ caretakers. Further, sexual violence against elders is often accompanied by other forms of abuse such as financial or emotional abuse. When an elder is a victim of sexual violence, care must be taken not to re-victimize her by removing her from her home and placing her in a foreign environment such as in a nursing home off of tribal lands and far away from her support network.

The Victims with Disabilities tab discusses unique considerations concerning victims with developmental, physical, and cognitive disabilities.  Often, perpetrators specifically target victims with disabilities because they perceive these victims as being more vulnerable and easier targets.  This tab contains information about the legal, healthcare, social services, and other needs of American Indian/Alaska Native victims.


The Teens tab contains information unique to American Indian/Alaska Native teen victims in Indian country.  Teens are often sexually assaulted by perpetrators they know. American Indian/Alaska Native teens may be especially vulnerable to sexual violence committed by multiple perpetrators. Mandatory reporting of sexual violence against minors and the ability of a minor to give legal consent are addressed in this section.

 

The LGBTQI tab addresses sexual violence committed against American Indian/Alaska Native victims who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered, Questioning, and Intersex (LGBTQI) or as Two-Spirit.  Two-Spirit victims face many challenges in accessing services including overcoming the bias and prejudice of first responders and other service providers. Sexual violence against Two-Spirit persons also may rise to the level of a hate crime that may trigger enhanced or additional penalties. 

 

The Students at Schools and Universities tab discusses sexual violence against American Indian/Alaska Native victims on campus.  Young women on campus face some of the highest rates of sexual assault of any population.

prison

 

The Incarcerated Victims tab discusses sexual violence against American Indian/ Alaskan Native people serving in tribal, federal, state, and local detention facilities.  Incarcerated victims are often assaulted by both prison guards and fellow inmates.  Further, these victims often struggle to receive help or services in preventing further attacks.  Under this tab, you will find laws and resources relating to preventing and responding to sexual violence against incarcerated victims.


The Human Trafficking tab discusses the phenomenon of human trafficking in Indian Country.  Here, you will learn about laws relevant to human trafficking victims, how American Indian/Alaskan Native women are much more susceptible to human trafficking than the general population, ways to identify whether a victim is also a victim of human trafficking, and advice about how to best serve human trafficking victims.


Finally, under the Alcohol and Substance Abuse tab, you will learn about the role that drugs and alcohol play in sexual assault.  Perpetrators may ply victims with alcohol to ease commission of the crime or may slip the victim a substance that renders them unconscious. Victims of sexual violence may also self-medicate with alcohol or substances.
National Indian Country Clearinghouse on Sexual Assault, a project by the Southwest Center for Law and Policy © 2013

This project was supported by  Grant No. 2011-TA-AX-K045 awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women. Points of view in this document are those of the author and do not necessary represent the official position of the U.S. Department of Justice. All rights reserved. | Privacy policy