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SEEKING SUPPORT?
The Alliance has compiled a number of resources available for survivors, their friends and families, and professionals assisting survivors in New York City.

FAQ and Factsheets: Health

Anger and Trauma

Anger is usually a central feature of a survivor's response to trauma because it is a core component of the survival response in humans. Anger helps people cope with life's adversities by providing us with increased energy to persist in the face of obstacles. However, uncontrolled anger can lead to a continued sense of being out of control of oneself and can create multiple problems in the personal lives of those who suffer from PTSD. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Child Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse can happen to boys or girls of any race, ethnicity, or economic background. If you know a child who is being sexually abused, you can help put a stop to it. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" Bulletins for Teens

Child Sexual Abuse

Child sexual abuse includes a wide range of sexual behaviors that take place between a child and an older person. These sexual behaviors are intended to erotically arouse the older person, generally without consideration for the reactions or choices of the child and without consideration for the effects of the behavior upon the child. Behaviors that are sexually abusive often involve bodily contact, such as in the case of sexual kissing, touching, fondling of genitals, and oral, anal, or vaginal intercourse. However, behaviors may be sexually abusive even if they don't involve contact, such as in the case of genital exposure ("flashing"), verbal pressure for sex, and sexual exploitation for purposes of prostitution or pornography. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Child Sexual Abuse: Defining the Problem

Mental health approaches to child sexual abuse tend to ignore the social and cultural context of any given episode of sexual abuse. As an organization, Generation Five is committed to shifting responses to child sexual abuse from individualized, mental health approaches to approaches that acknowledge child sexual abuse and exploitation as a social and political issue. The public health approach, the family violence approach, and the human rights approach are discussed as alternatives to the mental health approach. Read More...

From the Series: Generation Five

Complex PTSD

The diagnosis of PTSD accurately describes the symptoms that result when a person experiences a short-lived trauma. For example, car accidents, natural disasters, and rape are considered traumatic events of time-limited duration. However, chronic traumas continue for months or years at a time. Clinicians and researchers have found that the current PTSD diagnosis often does not capture the severe psychological harm that occurs with such prolonged, repeated trauma. For example, ordinary, healthy people who experience chronic trauma can experience changes in their self-concept and the way they adapt to stressful events. Dr. Judith Herman of Harvard University suggests that a new diagnosis, called Complex PTSD, is needed to describe the symptoms of long-term trauma. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Crime Victims Rights in the News Media

The news media can often inflict a "second victimization" upon crime victims or survivors by enhancing their feelings of violation, disorientation, and loss of control. It is important for journalists to understand the emotions felt by victims and survivors, who are often disoriented and confused following a crime. Victims should have the rights when dealing with media that include refusing interviews, limiting the scope of questions, demanding corrections, and the right to anonymity. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

Dating Violence Information for Teens

Dating violence is controlling, abusive and aggressive behavior in a romantic relationship. It can happen in straight or gay relationships. It can include verbal, emotional, physical, or sexual abuse, or a combination of them. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" Bulletins for Teens

Discussing Trauma and PTSD with Your Doctor

The experiencing or witnessing of traumatic events can lead to psychological (emotional) problems and to physical problems (in addition to any that occurred at the time of the trauma). These symptoms can last for a relatively short time after the event, can last for months or years, or can "surface" months or even years later. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Domestic Violence

The average yearly loss to female victims of intimate violence in medical expenses is $61,000,000; when broken or stolen property and lost pay is added to the figure it increases to $150,000,000 (Greenfield et al, 1998); when indirect costs are included, such as pain and suffering and loss of quality of life, another $65,000,000 annually would need to added (Miller, et al, 1996). Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

False Allegations of Sexual Assault vs. "Unfounded" Sexual Assaults

Distinctions between false allegations and unfounded allegations are difficult to make because they require knowing the motivation of the complainant. Some police departments will erroneously label a case unfounded when they should make use of other administrative codes. When reporting practices are reformed, the percentage of unfounded cases drops dramatically. Read More...

From the Series: The Texas Association Against Sexual Assault

Financial Assistance: Crime Victim Compensation

Crime victim compensation is a government program to reimburse victims of violent crimes- such as assault, homicide, rape, and, in some states, burglary - as well as their families for many of their out-of-pocket expenses. Every state has a crime victim compensation program. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

Forensic Validity of a PTSD Diagnosis

Many types of civil and criminal court cases and litigation involve claims of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. The diagnostic validity of these claims can impact directly upon the defense, plaintiff, or prosecutorial strategy, depending upon the nature of the case. It is important, therefore, for attorneys and others involved in the legal system to be able to assess the validity of PTSD evaluations and diagnoses. Although only an expert in PTSD can complete an in-depth review of a case and the diagnostic methodology, it is helpful if those conducting initial reviews know some basic facts about PTSD and what constitutes a sound diagnosis. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Grief: General

When a loved one dies, those left to mourn, or survivors, often find themselves entangled in a complex web of emotions and reactions. The death of a loved one can be an overwhelming, frightening and painful experience. The psychological, social and physical effects of loss are articulated through the practice of grief. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

HIV/AIDS Legislation

In recent years, most states have enacted laws concerning the testing of criminal offenders and their victims for infection and transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). HIV causes acquired immune deficiency syndrome, (AIDS). Such laws were passed in response to the recognized possibility of the transmission of HIV/AIDS during sexual assault or abuse, as well as other crimes where an exchange of bodily fluids takes place. They were also the result of a new understanding of the added trauma a sexual assault victim endures when faced with the possibility of having contracted a terminal disease. In a study conducted by the National Center for Victims of Crime and the National Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center, 40 percent (40%) of sexual assault victims indicated that the fear of contracting HIV/AIDS was a major concern. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" Legislative Topics

Hospital Financial Assistance: Bengali Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Financial Assistance: Chinese Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Financial Assistance: English Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Financial Assistance: English Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Financial Assistance: French Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Financial Assistance: Hatian Creole Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Financial Assistance: Korean Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Financial Assistance: Russian Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Financial Assistance: Serbo-Croatian Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Financial Assistance: Spanish Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Financial Assistance: Urdu Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: Bengali Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: Chinese Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: English Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: English Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: French Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: Haitian Creole Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: Korean Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: Russian Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: Serbo-Croatian Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: Spanish Language

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

Hospital Language Assistance Law: UrduLanguage

From the Series: New York Immigration Coalition

How to Help a Friend

Sometimes itís hard to know what to do or say if a friend has been a victim of crime. Understand that your friend is probably dealing with many different emotions and might not know how to talk about it either. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" Bulletins for Teens

Male Rape

Society is becoming increasingly aware of male rape. However, experts believe that current male rape statistics vastly under-represent the actual number of males age 12 and over who are raped each year. Rape crisis counselors estimate that while only one in 50 raped women report the crime to the police, the rates of under-reporting among men are even higher (Brochman, 1991). Until the mid-1980s, most literature discussed this violent crime in the context of women only. The lack of tracking of sexual crimes against men and the lack of research about the effects of male rape are indicative of the attitude held by society at large -- that while male rape occurs, it is not an acceptable topic for discussion. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

Multicultural Victims

With the increasing diversity of the U.S. population there is growing awareness of the need for culturally-specific responses to victims' needs. Victim service providers need to be aware first of their own possible cultural biases and the fact that others have widely varying responses to trauma. Providers must then be willing to learn about various cultures, to attend trainings aimed at developing multicultural sensitivity, and to mold their treatment practices accordingly. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

Nightmares

Nightmares refer to elaborate dreams that cause high levels of anxiety or terror (American Psychiatric Association, 1994). When nightmares occur in the context of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), they tend to involve the original threatening or horrifying set of circumstances that was involved during the traumatic event. This factsheet offers a brief discussion of both psychological treatments and psychopharmacological treatments (e.g., medicines). Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Criminal victimization can cause both short-term and long-term stress reactions. When a person survives a crisis such as a violent crime, there may be residual trauma and stress reactions. Many people who experience long-term stress reactions continue to function. Those who are unable to function within a normal range, or have difficulties may be suffering from Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD can occur at any age.. The estimated prevalence of PTSD among adult Americans is 7.8%, with women (10.4%) twice as likely as men (5%) to have PTSD at some point in their lives. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

PTSD and Physical Health

Exposure to traumatic events such as military combat, physical and sexual abuse, and natural disaster, can be related to poor physical health. Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is also related to health problems. This fact sheet provides information on the relationships between trauma, PTSD, and physical health; specific health problems associated with PTSD; health-risk behaviors and PTSD; mechanisms that help explain how PTSD and physical health could be related; and a clinical agenda to address PTSD and health. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

PTSD and Problems with Alcohol Use

PTSD does not automatically cause problems with alcohol use; there are many people with PTSD who do not have problems with alcohol. However, PTSD and alcohol together can be serious trouble for the trauma survivor and his or her family. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

PTSD and the Family

Traumatic experiences that happen to one member of a family can affect everyone else in the family. When trauma reactions are severe and go on for some time without treatment, they can cause major problems in a family. This fact sheet will describe family members' reactions to the traumatic event and to the survivor's symptoms and behaviors. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

PTSD Information for Women's Medical Providers

Women who have experienced sexual trauma are likely to be high consumers of healthcare services. Many of the problems experienced by female survivors present themselves in the primary care setting. These difficulties include interpersonal, social, physical, and psychological problems that may last for many years. Suggestions for health care providers are offered. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Rape of Women in a War Zone

Many hundreds of thousands of women have been raped in wars in this century alone, as reported in areas as diverse as Korea, Bangladesh, Liberia, Southeast Asia, Uganda, and in the former Yugoslavia. Assaults are often gang-related and sadistic, including other forms of physical torture. The effects of these types of trauma are immeasurable, long lasting, and shattering to both inner and outer worlds. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Rape-Related Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Traumatic events such as rape cause both short-term and long-term stress reactions. Many people who experience long-term stress reactions continue to function at optimal levels. Those who are unable to function at a normal range or have difficulties in one or more areas may have Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This bulletin discusses Rape-related Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (RR-PTSD), a form of PTSD suffered by sexual assault and rape victims. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

Safety Tips for Children: Grades K-5

Most grown-ups are nice to kids and care about what happens to them. But every now and then there are grown-ups who try to touch a child in a way that is not okay. It might be a person you know and trust, like a relative, teacher or neighbor. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" Safety Plans

Sexual Assault

In 1992, the National Women’s Study estimated that 683,000 adult American women are forcibly raped each year (National Center for Victims of Crime & Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center, 1992). According to Bureau of Justice Statistics data, U.S. male and female residents age 12 and older experienced an estimated 307,000 rapes and sexual assaults in 1996 (Ringel, 1997). The difference between the number of rapes in 1992 and the number of rapes and sexual assaults in 1996 reflects standard statistical error and differences in methodology. One significant methodological difference is that the National Women’s Study interviewed individuals by telephone, allowing women greater confidence in their anonymity. The Bureau of Justice Statistics conducted face-to-face interviews, in some cases with entire families present, which could have possibly deterred disclosure. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

Sexual Assault against Females

Focusing specifically on adult female victims of sexual assault, this fact sheet defines sexual assault, discusses rates of frequency, and provides an overview of some of the short-term and long-term concerns for female victims. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Sexual Assault Legislation

Sexual assault is a general term which can include many different crimes and varying degrees of severity of those offenses, such as: rape in the first degree, second degree sexual contact, sexual conduct, and indecent exposure, to name a few. Sexual assault almost always involves sexual intercourse oral or anal intercourse or the penetration or touching of the genitals or anal orifice with a part of the body or an inanimate object. It can be committed by one or more persons against another who is unwilling or unable to physically, mentally or legally consent to the sexual act. In recent years, many states have amended their laws concerning sexual assault to make such crimes gender-neutral that is, sexual assault can be by a male against a female, male against male, female against male, or female against female. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" Legislative Topics

Sleep and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Sleep problems can be a normal response to past trauma or anticipated threat. Sleep disturbances such as difficulty falling asleep, waking frequently, and having distressing dreams or nightmares are among the problems common for those with PTSD Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Trauma of Victimization

he trauma of victimization is a direct reaction to the aftermath of crime. Crime victims suffer a tremendous amount of physical and psychological trauma. The primary injuries victims suffer can be grouped into three distinct categories: physical, financial and emotional. When victims do not receive the appropriate support and intervention in the aftermath of the crime, they suffer "secondary" injuries. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

Trauma, PTSD, and the Primary Care Provider

Recent evidence suggests that psychological assistance can prevent or greatly reduce the severity of PTSD. Health care providers must be able to accurately identify PTSD and establish referral procedures. Possible behavioral health risks and psychosocial problems associated with PTSD are detailed. Read More...

From the Series: The National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Victim Services in Hospitals

Hospitals spend millions of dollars each year treating victims of crime — including victims of physical abuse, assault, homicide, rape, aggravated assault and domestic violence. At an average county hospital, treatment of gunshot wounds can exceed 100 million dollars annually. Hospitals are essential settings for providing victim assistance and services. Over seventy percent (70%) of reported victims of aggravated assault, robbery, and forcible rape seek medical treatment in hospital emergency departments. Read More...

From the Series: NCVC "Get Help" General Information

Rape and Racism

Rape and racism are connected in many ways: they use words as weapons, they are forms of domination, they are historically intertwined, they promote myths, and they grow stronger in our silence. Read More...

From the Series: Men Can Stop Rape

Rape as a Men's Issue

An educational handout describing the prevelance of sexual victimization for males, some consequences for male survivors, and the role men can play in ending sexual violence. Read More...

From the Series: Men Can Stop Rape

Supporting Survivors

Advice for supporters and significant others when someone says "I was raped." Read More...

From the Series: Men Can Stop Rape
Related Links

Resource Guide
Guide to Survivor Services
[Go to the Service Map]


The Resource Guide is a free information service from The New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault.

If you know of a resource for sexual assault survivors which should be included in the Guide, please tell us about it.


Panel Discussion
Panel Discussion