When Disaster Strikes: A Guide to Preventing and Responding to Sexual Violence During the Worst of Times
Disasters - both natural and human-influenced - increase risks for sexual violence against women, children and men with an estimated 1-in-5 women and 1-in-17 men impacted by these actions. That risk is further elevated for vulnerable populations including BIPOC and children living with their abusers. In response to these startling statistics, the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC) developed its first guide to preventing and responding to sexual violence within disasters in 2008. Recently updated and expanded, the NSVRC Disasters Guidebook, “Sexual Violence In Disasters ” (aka "the guide") offers thought-provoking ideas and recommendations on disaster preparedness that can both prevent and address experiences of disaster-related sexual violence. In this episode we explore the guide, the expansive and troubling sexual violence continuum within disasters and instances of sexual violence found within the calamities of Hurricane Katrina, the COVID pandemic and the current war in Ukraine with expert Jennifer Grove, Prevention Director at NSVRC. Ms. Grove has worked in the sexual violence prevention movement for over 24 years conducting community-based domestic violence and sexual assault programs and the national prevention work of the NSVRC by providing training and resources to sexual assault coalitions, state departments of health, local community programs, and other organizations working to develop, implement, and evaluate sexual violence prevention strategies. Listeners are encouraged to review the guide in detail on the NSVRC website.