The Science Behind Why Women May Not Report Sexual Assault

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THE SCIENCE BEHIND WHY WOMEN MAY NOT REPORT SEXUAL ASSAULT

A Message from the President of APA, Dr. Jessica Henderson Daniel

Traumatic memories stored differently in the brain, according to psychological research

WASHINGTON — Following is a statement by Jessica Henderson Daniel, PhD, president of the American Psychological Association, regarding what the scientific research says about the reporting of sexual assault in light of the allegation by Christine Blasey Ford, PhD, with respect to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh:

“Sexual assault is likely the most under-reported crime in the United States. About two-thirds of female sexual assault victims do not report to the police, and many victims do not tell anyone. Sexual assault is a terrifying and humiliating experience. Women choose not to report for a variety of reasons — fear for their safety, being in shock, fear of not being believed, feeling embarrassed or ashamed, or expecting to be blamed.”

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