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A staggering 64% of transgender people have experienced sexual assault in their lifetime.Though the Violence Against Women Act of 2013 (VAWA) recently extended LGBT nondiscrimination protections in resources for domestic and sexual violence, service providers across the country still lack the cultural competency needed to serve the LGBT community.
As with most hate-based violence, transgender individuals are the most likely to be affected in the LGBT community.The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Projects (NCAVP) estimates that nearly one in ten LGBTQ survivors of intimate partner violence (IPV) has experienced sexual assault from those partners.Studies suggest that around half of transgender people and bisexual women will experience sexual violence at some point in their lifetimes.For LGBTQ survivors of sexual assault, their identities – and the discrimination they face surrounding those identities – often make them hesitant to seek help from police, hospitals, shelters or rape crisis centers, the very resources that are supposed to help them. Transgender Survey found that one in five (20%) respondents who were incarcerated in jail, prison, or juvenile detention in the past year were sexually assaulted by facility staff during that time.85 percent of victim advocates surveyed by the NCAVP reported having worked with an LGBTQ survivor who was denied services because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Additionally, 17% of respondents who stayed at one or more homeless shelters in the past year were sexually assaulted at the shelter because they were transgender This epidemic of sexual violence in the LGBTQ community is something we must all work together to address.