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"One year ago, I locked my door and went to sleep; like we all do on any given night. Unfortunately, this night was like no other before and was one I will never be able to forget. I woke up that night to a co-worker who had undressed himself, crawled into my bed and raped me. "
Kathleen, rape survivor

Rape is a crime, talking about it isn't. SPEAK.

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Learn how to be streetwise, safe, and how to protect yourself. Joining with your neighbors to make your streets safer places to be can reduce the opportunity for rapists and other street criminals to strike.

Three Basic Rules

  • DO stay alert: Keep in mind on your surroundings, who's in front of you and who is behind you. Don't get distracted. If you're worried about crime, ask a friend to accompany you when you go out.

  • DO communicate the message that you are calm, confident and know where you're going. Stand tall, walk purposefully and make quick eye contact with people around you.

  • DO trust your instincts. If you feel uncomfortable in a place or situation, leave.

When walking

  • Plan the safest route to your destination and use it. Choose well-lighted busy streets and avoid passing vacant lots, alleys or construction sites. Take the long way if it's the safest.

  • Know your neighborhood. Find out what stores and restaurants are open late and where the police and fire stations are.

  • Make sure you know where your children are going when they go out and encourage them to play with other kids. Show them safe places in the neighborhood where they can go if they feel scared.

  • Walk facing traffic so you can see approaching cars.

  • Bring "emergency" change for car fare, bus fare or telephone call.

  • Have your car or house key in hand as you approach home or vehicle.

  • If you suspect you're being followed by someone on foot, cross the street and head for the nearest well-lighted populated area. Walk quickly or run to a house or a store and call police. If you are really scared, scream for help.

When driving

  • Have your keys ready when you approach the vehicle.
  • Always lock your doors, both when driving and when parked.
  • Park in well-lighted areas.
  • Keep your vehicle in good repair and make certain you have enough fuel. Never keep fuel tank below 1/4.
  • If your vehicle breaks down, raise the hood or display a sign. Stay in the vehicle with the doors locked and the windows rolled up. If someone stops to offer you help, roll the window down slightly and ask the person to call for assistance.
  • If involved in a minor collision at night or in an isolated area, do not exit to inspect the damage or contact the other driver. Signal the other driver with your lights, and proceed to the nearest lighted and occupied business or police station.
  • If you are being followed while driving, drive to the nearest police or fire station, open gas station, other business or well-lighted residence where you can safely call police. Try to get the car's license number and description. If no safe areas are near, honk the horn repeatedly and turn on your emergency flashers.

Going on a date

  • Find out about a new date. Ask others who know or have dated the person. Date with friends before accepting a single date. Make definite plans in advance. Inform a friend, roommate or someone else you trust of your plans, who you will be with and when you plan to return.
  • Take your own vehicle or meet at the destination. Carry money for a phone call or fare home.
  • Avoid parties where men greatly outnumber women. Don't leave a group setting with a person you don't know. Attend parties in small groups where possible.
  • Be wary of behavior that makes you feel uncomfortable. If it persists, leave. Stand up for yourself.
  • Avoid secluded places where you are put in a vulnerable position.
  • Be careful when inviting someone to your residence or accepting an invitation to theirs.
  • Know that it's O.K. to refuse a date. Trust your gut instincts.

Prevention Strategies

       Prevention of any crime begins with awareness. Become aware of your surroundings and stay tuned in for possible danger or threats to your safety. Below are some tips for adding this awareness to your daily life.

At Home
  • Be sure the doors of your residence are locked when you are there as well as when away.
  • Use peepholes to identify people before opening the door. Never indicate to anyone that you are alone.
  • Never let strangers inside your residence to use the phone. Offer to make the call for them.
  • Be wary of behavior that makes you feel uncomfortable. If it persists, leave. Stand up for yourself.
  • Always have your key ready for quick entry.
  • If you find a door or window open or signs of forced entry upon arriving at your residence, don't enter. Go to the nearest phone and call the police.
List compiled from various sources, including the: The National Crime Prevention Council


This site is offered for support of other rape and sexual abuse survivors. It is not meant to be a substitute for any kind of professional help.
If you are in a crisis situation we urge to contact your local rape crisis center or health care professional.

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