LGBTQIA+ Survivors

“Sometimes equality means treating people the same despite their differences, 

and sometimes it means treating people as equals and accommodating their differences”

- Saskatchewan Ad Hoc Committee on Abuse in Lesbian Relationships, N.D.

  • Those who identify as LGBTQIA+ may face “double layered” stigma -- not only the stigma of their sexual assault but also the stigma of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Some organizations approach serving LGBT victims with a ‘we treat everyone the same’ mentality. This approach does not recognize that accessibility and cultural competence involve being responsive both to similarities and differences between individuals and communities.
  • Those who identify as LGBTQIA+ face different challenges because of discrimination in our society.
  • Terminology has an impact on people; it is not just a matter of political correctness. Labels change over time and may vary depending on someone’s cultural and economic background, age, geographic region, or political ideals.

It is important to respect how each person identifies and try to mirror their language.

Facts About Sexual Assault in the LGBTQIA+ Community

  • In a study of 162 men who identified as gay and 111 women who identified as lesbian, 52% of the participants reported at least one incident of sexual assault/coercion. (Waldner-Haugrud & Gratch, 1997)
  • 46.1% of bisexual women experienced sexual assault at some point in their life. (The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey)
  • 41% of the women who identified as lesbian self-identified as a victim of sexual violence. (Sloan & Edmond, 1996)
  • Nearly half of bisexual men and four in ten gay men have experienced sexual violence other than rape in their lifetime. (National Center for Lesbian Rights)

Respect the choices of LGBTQIA+ individuals who may not be "out." 

Reporting may be difficult or even impossible.

Subpages (1): Trans-Specific Resources