Existing efforts to address sexual abuse of children often fail to sufficiently account for children with disabilities, who are at higher risk for abuse than children without disabilities. In fact, the sexual abuse of children with disabilities has not garnered the attention of policymakers, practitioners, advocates, or community members, and these children are less likely to receive victim services and supports due to a variety of barriers. 

In March 2012, Vera’s Center on Victimization and Safety partnered with the Ms. Foundation for Women to increase the number and breadth of efforts specifically addressing sexual abuse of children with disabilities. To that end, Vera is working with the country’s leading experts on sexual abuse and disability to create a blueprint that will outline a national strategy for addressing this issue.

Project Objectives

  • To create a national blueprint for addressing sexual abuse of children with disabilities.

  • To ensure that supportive services for child victims of sexual abuse include children with disabilities.

  • To ensure that prevention efforts account for the unique factors that contribute to sexual abuse of children with disabilities. 

Key Fact

1. Children with disabilities are 3x more likely to be the victims of sexual abuse than children without disabilities.