Reduce Your Risk

Sexual assault is a growing threat and the best defense is to be aware and prepared.  Not every sexual assault situation can be anticipated, but recognizing potentially dangerous situations may help you avoid an assault.

  • Be aware that alcohol is a risk factor for sexual assault.  If you consume it, you are in greater danger of being assaulted.
  • Consider going out with a group or in public rather than being alone on a date with someone you do not know very well.
  • Be aware of men who invade your personal space, come on too strong, or otherwise make you feel uncomfortable.
  • Remember that you have the right to say "No".
  • Learn how sedating substances like Rohypnol and GHB can be used against you by a perpetrator.
  • Trust your intuition:  if you feel like you are being pressured, you probably are.
  • Learn more about your risk of sexual assault by having a staff member from Turning Point at your group’s next meeting.
  • Remember that only a perpetrator can prevent sexual assault, but the more you know the better your chances are of reducing your risks.

Driving

  • Lock your car when driving and parked.
  • Avoid isolated or poorly lit parking spots.
  • In 1999, one in every 10 sexual assault victims was male. (1999 NCVS)
  • Scan the area when approaching your car.  Check the back seat as well.
  • Have your keys ready when approaching your car.
  • If your car breaks down, lock the doors and stay inside.  Ask anyone who stops to call for help.

Social Situations

  • Learn about a man's attitudes before you go out on a date or as you talk.
  • Express your limits clearly.
  • Avoid secluded places.
  • Avoid alcohol and other drugs. (See Date Rape Drugs)
  • Arrange your own transportation.

At Home

  • Leave lights on when you are out.
  • Ask for a salesperson's, repairman's, policeman's credentials before allowing them in your home.
  • Vary your daily routine, if possible.
  • Install and use quality dead-bolt locks.
  • Make friends in your neighborhood.
  • Install a peephole in your door.
  • Do not enter your home if it looks like it has been broken into.

Walking

  • Plan your route and walk confidently.
  • Don’t walk in isolated areas, especially at night.
  • Never accept a ride from a stranger.
  • If you are being followed, go into a store or other area with people or knock on a door for help.