Sexual Violence Research

Trans+ Sexual Violence Survey Results

[Under a grant from the Office of Victims of Crime, FORGE recently closed two national, Morehouse School of Medicine IRB-approved surveys of both transgender people and sexual assault service providers.  Watch this space for upcoming reports on the survey results.  In the meantime, this section contains information on our ground-breaking 2004 study of transgender sexual assault survivors.]

In 2004, FORGE received a small grant from the Greater Milwaukee Foundation to undertake a project to understand more about how sexual violence affects transgender persons, and develop some beginning resources.

Through a combination of online and paper surveys, 265 individuals gave information on their experiences as either a direct survivor or “secondary” survivor (support person to a direct survivor). Since SOFFAs (significant others, friends, family, and allies) of transpeople also frequently experience transphobia directly, SOFFAs were also asked to share their experiences.

A number of documents have been created to summarize the findings of both the surveys and an in-person community dialogue that was held in Milwaukee to flesh out survey responses. The charts summarize respondents’ answers to 44 questions, including:

  • Demographics such as gender identity, age, income, racial identification, and disabilities;
  • Information about the assault/s such as age of victim, how many assaults have been experienced, perpetrators’ gender and relationship to victim, and whether gender was a factor in the assault/s; and
  • Treatment (if any) received after the assault/s.

A implications report lays out what FORGE believes to be the implications of the survey findings, including key differences of trans sexual violence survivors from survivors who are Lesbian, Gay male, Bisexual, or from the general public; barriers to service; and themes that may relate to other victim populations, as well. The implications report also contains a number of quotes from respondents who answered narrative questions or shared additional information.

To begin to fill identified service needs, FORGE sponsored a six-month in-person support group in Milwaukee and produced several documents and resources for survivors and the professionals who serve them. Self-help resources lists websites, books, and other resources that are trans-sensitive (or at least inclusive) and seem useful to survivors. (If you would like theseresources in a handout format to share with others, it’s available here in Adobe Acrobat or .pdf form.) For survivors in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin area, a list of therapists gives the therapists we know who are trans-sensitive (or at least inclusive) and have at least some level of expertise in sexual assault survivor issues. Finally, FORGE sponsors an international email listservethat focuses on LGBTQI survivors and SOFFAs.

FORGE will continue to mine this data to produce academic articles, reports on specific subjects, commissioned papers, and resources for service providers. If you are or know of someone who might be able to fund some of this work, please let us know! Currently, the following special reports/summaries are available: