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The Impact of Stalking on Underrepresented Communities

December 23rd, 2020

Stalking is a crime under the laws of all 50 states, the U.S. Territories, and the Federal government. However, stalking cases have long presented challenges for the criminal justice system even though research has shown a direct correlation with femicide, the intentional murder of women because they are women, and stalking. The end result has been low conviction rates for stalking offenses and frustration for stalking survivors. This month, RISE is focused on bringing awareness to the often un-talked about crime of Stalking and its impact on underserved communities in an effort to support survivors of stalking and prevent stalking from ever happening.

RISE recognizes that people of color, LGBTQ+ folks, individuals with disabilities and other underrepresented identities, may have experienced instances of interpersonal discrimination and racism with medical providers, police officers, university officials, or other individuals in positions of power as well as institutional racism with educational settings, governmental systems, law enforcement, and the legal system. These experiences may cause survivors and their loved ones to distrust the institutions that are supposed to assist survivors in their healing journey and provide greater barriers to reporting incidents of Stalking.

RISE wants to insure all survivors of our confidentiality, advocates will not release your information or inform any other agency without your explicit consent.

What's different about interpersonal violence for LGBTQ+ Folks, people of color and other underserved populations?

Although we realize that there is not one universal set of identities or experiences, there are some common factors that can create barriers for survivors from underserved communities as they seek help. These factors include:

  • Cultural and/or religious beliefs that restrain the survivor from leaving an abusive relationship or involving others in personal matters
  • Fear that their experience will negatively reflect on or confirm the stereotypes placed on their community or ethnicity
  • Intersecting stigmas of homophobia/transphobia, racism, and survivorship
  • Strong ties to one’s race, culture and/or family, adding to the pressure to not report what happened
  • Fear of the impact that their family finding out about their assault or abuse and it bringing shame to themselves and their family
  • The legal status of the survivor and/or the perpetrator
  • Due to the economic disparities that communities of color experience, survivors can struggle to find affordable, accessible, and affirming support from community providers
  • Lack of advocates or counselors who look like the survivor or share common experiences
***Check out these links for more information on Stalking

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RISE is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that provides crisis intervention and treatment services to survivors of sexual and intimate partner violence and their loved ones. All services are provided confidentially, at low or no cost, to anyone regardless of age, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, religion, or ability. All crisis services are available in Spanish and English.