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Rape, and other forms of sexual violence, is preventable. Recognizing this, Congress passed the Violence Against Women Act in 1994. This landmark legislation established the Rape Prevention and Education (RPE) program at CDC. The goal of the RPE program is to strengthen sexual violence prevention efforts at the local, state, and national level. It operates in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and six U.S. territories.
Primary prevention is the cornerstone of the RPE program. Program activities are guided by a set of prevention principles that include:
Indiana’s RPE Program is administered through the Office of Women’s Health (OWH) at the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH). OWH recognized the significant effect that sexual assault has had on the overall health of women in the state. Since 2008, OWH has administered the federally funded Rape Prevention and Education (RPE) program to help reduce and eliminate the incidence of sexual violence across the state.
ISDH approaches sexual violence from a public health perspective, recognizing that primary prevention, including efforts to change cultural norms, behaviors, and practices is essential to create a state free from violence. Public health is concerned with community and population-based approaches rather than those focused on the individual, and uses data-informed, evidence-based approaches. All sexual violence primary prevention program planning and implementation is rooted in a four-step practice in the public health approach (CDC, 2013).
Indiana has developed its first comprehensive plan to address sexual violence across the state, entitled Indiana’s Commitment to Primary Prevention: A state free of sexual violence 2010-2015. Click on the links below to read the different documents that make up the plan. For more information, please contact Terri Lee, Violence Prevention Program Director, at (317) 233-7056 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
List of Appendices
Click here to learn about sexual violence primary prevention programs in Indiana.