In the wake of a sexual assault, the lack of mental health counseling services, legal assistance, and even physical safety, leaves survivors at high risk for developing serious, long-term psychological problems. One of JDI’s top priorities is to mobilize mental health service providers and legal aid organizations across the country to assist prisoner rape survivors. Some 500 groups that are willing to do so form part of JDI’s nationwide Resource Guide for Survivors of Sexual Abuse Behind Bars.

Every day, JDI communicates with survivors of sexual abuse in detention. Frequently, they emphasize the healing effect of receiving one of JDI’s Survivor Packets, which includes self-help materials, a letter of hope from another survivor, and geographically relevant sections of the Resource Guide. One survivor in New York said:

“I have thought it was my fault that these things were done to me, but since writing to JDI and reading their literature I have realized it was not my fault and I will make it through with help from JDI, my family and friends.”

If you or someone you know has been sexually abused behind bars and would like support or information, including JDI's Survivor Packet, please contact Leelyn Aquino, Operations Manager, at, by phone at 213-384-1400 x110, or via confidential, legal mail at the following address:

Cynthia Totten, Esq.
CA Attorney Reg. #199266
3325 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 340
Los Angeles, CA 90010

Just Detention International (JDI) provides selected materials from leading research addressing sexual violence in detention solely for informational and educational purposes. The analysis provided and the views and opinions expressed in these materials are those of the authors and do not necessarily state or reflect those of JDI. Where links to other agencies and private organizations are provided, JDI is not responsible for the availability or content of these external sites.