Legally, a person commits a sexual offense if they intentionally or knowingly cause the penetration of the mouth, anus, or sexual organs of another person by any means without that person’s consent.
At SAFE, we use a broader definition to include any unwanted sexual act when the victim is unwilling or unable to give consent – including being under 17 years old, disabled, intoxicated, drugged, or unconscious. If you have been sexually assaulted and need help, call our confidential, 24-hour SAFEline at 512.267.SAFE (7233) or access our online chat at safeaustin.org/chat. For more options, please check the I Need Help section.
The number of rapes and sexual assaults is staggering
According to the Institute on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault (IDVSA):
- Nearly 44% of Texas women have been sexually assaulted
- 22.5% of Texas men have been sexually assaulted
- More than 65% of survivors have been sexually assaulted multiple times
- About 53% of sexual assault survivors report an acquaintance or friend was the offender
- Sexual assault costs the state of Texas an estimated $8 billion per year in medical expenses, lost work productivity, and mental healthcare
Survivors can reach out to the SAFEline Hotline or online Chat for information and guidance about whether or not to report the rape to police. If you have just been raped and choose to go to the hospital, our medical forensic accompaniment services may assist you in the emergency room. Additionally, the trained staff at Eloise House administer free, 24/7 Sexual Assault Forensic Exams (SAFEs).
Acquaintance rape occurs when a date, friend, co-worker, teacher, neighbor, or someone known by the victim uses physical force, threats, intimidation, or drugs/alcohol to force sex.
Young people may be at higher risk of acquaintance rape. As they are learning about relationships and testing or creating boundaries for themselves, they may be hesitant to say “no” or to fight back. They may also feel it is their fault for “getting themselves” into the situation.
Anyone who has experienced acquaintance rape can contact SAFE for support or counseling. The SAFEline Hotline is always available at 512.267.SAFE (7233).
Male rape is vastly misunderstood and under reported. According to a study by the University of Texas at Austin, 1 in 5 men experience sexual assault. SAFE offers all programs and services to male survivors, without discrimination. We have a specific counseling group for male survivors of both sexual assault and domestic violence. Call our confidential, 24-hour SAFEline or contact SAFE via online chat.
Child sexual abuse
Child sexual abuse is not only physical contact between an adult and child, it also includes exposure, voyeurism, masturbation, and child pornography. It is also child sexual abuse when an abuser uses imbalance in age, size, knowledge, or emotional power to force a child to engage in sexual contact with the child’s peers.