U.S. Department of Commerce

Survey on Sexual Violence

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PURPOSE

The U.S. Census Bureau administered the Survey on Sexual Violence for the first time in 2004 for the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). On September 4, 2003 the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 was signed into law. The legislation required the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) to develop a new national data collection of sexual violence within correctional facilities. The 2004 survey was the first-ever survey of correctional systems and facilities, designed to measure the number of reported incidents of inmate-on-inmate and staff-on-inmate sexual misconduct through the use of 6 forms (SSV-1 through 6).

COVERAGE

Data are collected from approximately 1066 correctional facilities.

The first two versions of the survey, the SSV-1 and SSV-2, are utilized for the Federal Bureau of Prisons and the Adult State Prison Systems in all 50 states as well as in the territories and commonwealths. Prison administrators are directed to report only on incidents of sexual violence that occurred within publicly operated adult facilities. The State officials are instructed to report data representing all prisons in their state on one form. The Federal Bureau of Prisons official reports data representing all Federal correctional facilities in the country on one form.

The second two versions of the survey, the SSV-3 and SSV-4, are used for the Local Jail Jurisdictions and Other Correctional Facilities. Jail administrators are directed to report only on incidents of sexual violence that occurred within their adult facilities. The SSV-3 forms are sent to a selected sample of publicly operated jail facilities. The SSV-4 forms are sent to a sample of the following: privately operated prison facilities and jails; jails in Indian country; military operated facilities; and facilities operated by the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The last two versions of the survey, the SSV-5 and SSV-6, are developed for the State Juvenile Systems and Locally or Privately-Operated Juvenile Facilities. The SSV-5 forms are sent to all State operated juvenile correctional facilities in 49 states and the District of Columbia (Arkansas is the only State that does not operate a juvenile facility). The State officials are instructed to report data representing all State juvenile facilities in their state on one form. The SSV-6 forms are sent to a sample drawn from the approximately 685 locally operated juvenile facilities and 2,275 privately operated juveniles identified in the 2006 Juveniles Residential Facility Census. Sample selection is the responsibility of the Office of Statistical Methods and Research for Economic Programs (OSMREP) under the guidance of BJS and the Criminal Justice Statistics Branch (CJSB) staff.

CONTENT

Data are collected on counts of sexual violence allegations for each year. If any allegations are substantiated, then victim and perpetrator demographics are collected, date of incident, location, any injuries, the nature of the allegation, and any sanctions imposed on the perpetrator.

FREQUENCY

This survey is collected annually since its inception in 2004. Data collection begins approximately one month after each reference year, and continue for about 6 months. For the SSV-1 through SSV-4 forms, data is requested by the middle of April each year. The sponsor may export data files via a secured website as needed prior to the final delivery date in June. For the SSV-5 and SSV-6 forms, data is requested by the middle of May each year.

METHODS

Data collection methods include Web, fax and mail.

PRODUCTS

The sponsor may export data files via a secured website as needed.

Sexual Violence Reported by Correctional Authorities is a bulletin published by the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) approximately six months after the reference year. The bulletin presents data on administrative records collection of incidents of inmate-on-inmate and staff-on-inmate sexual violence reported to correctional authorities.

The report provides counts of sexual violence, by type, for adult prisons, jails, and other adult correctional facilities. The report provides an in depth analysis of substantiated incidents, including where the incidents occur, time of day, number and characteristics of victims and perpetrators, nature of the injuries, impact on the victims and sanctions imposed on the perpetrators.

Sexual Violence Reported by Juvenile Correctional Authorities is a bulletin published by the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) approximately a year after the reference year. The bulleting presents data on administrative records collection of incidents required under the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 (Public Law 108-79) of youth-on-youth and staff-on-youth sexual violence reported to juvenile correctional authorities. The report provides counts of sexual violence by type, for juvenile correctional facilities.

USES

The Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics uses the data to analyze sexual violence in correctional facilities. State administrators, researchers, and the general media use the data for statistical purposes.

SPECIAL FEATURES

There are tables with breakdowns of each facility included in the survey with their totals for all four types of allegations of sexual violence.

RELATED PROGRAMS

Census of Governments

Annual Survey of Jails

State and Federal Adult Correctional Facilities Census


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