SAN ANTONIO – A local nonprofit is raising awareness of the alarming numbers factored into minors who have faced sexual violence in their lifetime.
Officials with the Rape Crisis Center, which is equipped with counselors and trained professionals dedicated to eliminating sexual violence, said on average, they see one to three new cases of victims of sexual assault or rape every day.
Andrea Lopez, with the Rape Crisis Center, said the majority of those cases are minors under the age of 17.
- Eight out of 10 survivors knew their perpetrator.
- In Texas, 70 percent of the time, victims knew their rapist.
- Ninety percent of those cases go unreported, specifically children's cases.
- Lopez said the biggest weapon against those attacks is for families to continue to educate their children at an early age about the following:
- Respect of others
- Communication skills
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What Lopez is saying:
“When child sexual abuse is something that occurs and it happens early, the impacts are lifelong and multifaceted and multilayered," Lopez said.
“I think the broader message is to get at the social norms and societal conditions that create and reinforce these systems of violence and oppression in the first place, so if we can get at those underlying root causes, and if sexual violence is a symptom of those underlying causes, then the issue would be solved,” Lopez said.
The San Antonio Police Department’s Public Information Office released the following statement:
“We ask that parents always be mindful of where their children are at and who they are surrounded by. Additionally, parents should have open communication with their children and assure them that if they have been a victim, to speak up. SAPD’s Special Victims Unit is dedicated to investigating sexual assaults against children. They work tirelessly to ensure justice is served for the victims. We encourage anyone who is a victim of a sexual assault and has not reported it, to contact our Special Victims Unit at 210-207-2313."