Risk and protective factors demonstrate how we can better inform our prevention strategies. Risk factors are associated with a higher likelihood of sexual violence perpetration while protective factors can have the opportunity to decrease the likelihood of experiencing sexual violence by mitigating risk. Although these contributing factors should not be considered direct causes, they are based upon research that can inform best practices for prevention strategies. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has developed a list of risk and protective factors based upon the four levels of the Social-Ecological Model – individual, relationship, community, and societal.
Protective factors may lessen the likelihood of sexual violence victimization or perpetration. These factors can exist at individual, relational, community, and societal levels.
- Families where caregivers work through conflicts peacefully
- Emotional health and connectedness
- Academic achievement
- Empathy and concern for how one’s actions affect others
Last modified: 6/15/2022