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SVJI Resource Highlight: Best Practices for Sexual Assault Response Teams (SARTs) Supporting LGBTQIA+ Victims/Survivors

By Fatima Jayoma 

Welcome to the Rural Realities Blog! In today’s blog, we will be highlighting two new resources, Best Practices for SARTs Supporting LGBTQIA+ Victims/Survivors and LGBTQIA+ Cultural Humility Readiness Assessment for SARTs. These resources were developed under our National SART Project.

The Best Practices for SARTs Supporting LGBTQIA+ Victims/Survivors resource highlights the role that SARTs can play in providing support to LGBTQIA+ community members and victims/survivors by utilizing best practices to increase awareness of the prevalence of sexual assault within the LGBTQIA+ community and address any inconsistencies in the response. This resource will go through four best practices: assessing current efforts, ensuring transparency of services, acknowledging systemic trauma, and fostering an inclusive space at the table. By adopting these best practices, SARTs can start to create an inclusive and culturally responsive response that validates the experiences of LGBTQIA+ victims/survivors.

The LGBTQIA+ Cultural Humility Readiness Assessment for SARTs is an assessment tool specifically created to support SARTs in engaging in more focused discussions regarding LGBTQIA+ inclusion. The assessment tool prompts participants to assess the following key areas: staff training, SART mission/vision, creating a welcoming environment, LGBTQIA+ representation, and policies/protocols/evaluation. By completing this assessment, individual agencies or SARTs can gain valuable insights into their strengths and identify areas for improvement in the inclusion of the LGBTQIA+ community.

If you have any questions about the resources shared in this blog, please reach out to us at svji@mncasa.org.

Note: LGBTQIA+ is an acronym made up of terms intended to be more comprehensive in the inclusion of the Lesbian, Gay, Bi, and Trans community. The additional inclusion of QIA+ include Queer/Questioning, Intersex, Asexual, and the plus sign represents additional communities as a catch all. LGBTQIA+ may be used interchangeably with LGBT, LGBTQ, or other variations.

This project was supported by Grant No. 15JOVW-22-GK-04024-RURA awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this publication/program/exhibition are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women.