Sexual abuse is devastating to victims, whether it happens in the community, in the home, or behind bars. Survivors in the community can call anonymous hotlines or reach out to a trusted friend or family member. Incarcerated survivors, on the other hand, are isolated from such community support and often face life-threatening danger -- from other inmates and from staff -- for reporting the abuse. Prisoner rape survivors, even those who do risk asking for help, rarely get appropriate medical and mental health care, making it more likely that they will develop serious, long-term health problems. Inmates also face difficulties getting legal services; as a result, perpetrators of abuse -- and the facilities that fail to stop them -- are seldom held to account.
JDI works with survivors and their loved ones to make sure that they get the information and help they need to heal. JDI helps prisons and jails establish links to community organizations -- such as rape crisis centers -- that can assist survivors in the aftermath of an assault. JDI also educates service providers nationwide so that they are prepared to meet the needs of incarcerated and formerly incarcerated survivors of sexual abuse. JDI’s self-help materials serve as a lifeline to countless survivors who are struggling in the aftermath of an assault.