Purpose: This paper explores adolescent sexual assault and describes solutions for three issues: lack of victim reporting; victims not seeking treatment, especially for PTSD; and institutional support from the juvenile justice system.
Design: The paper design was structured by the professor’s subheadings, requesting student’s personal experience, research, valid resources, application to proposed solution, actual evidence-based solution, alternative solutions not chosen, assumptions, barriers, feasibility of solution, and social reaction to change over time.
Findings: For lack of victim reporting, mandatory education in school is suggested, including funding sexual assault education and deconstructing cultural myths. For seeking treatment, the individual mobile app “Survivors,” available 24/7, is described, incorporating activities, remedies, and professionals’ guidance and prescriptions. For juvenile justice system support, restorative justice is proposed, focusing on the victims and restitution rather than offender punishment.
Research limitations/implications: Much literature documents high percentages of adolescent sexual assault and victims’ reluctance to report and seek treatment. Limitations include funding for education, expense of the app, and slow implementation of restorative justice.
Practical implications: With treatment, victims could be helped to overcome the trauma and PTSD and resume productive lives.
Social implications: Greater public awareness of sexual assault and treatment could help victims in coming forward. Application of restorative justice could aid rehabilitation of victims and offenders.
Originality/Value: A highly personal and moving account of the author’s sexual assault is combined with scholarly research and the three-part solution. This combination enhances understanding of the pervasive problem of adolescent sexual assault.
Keywords: adolescent, juvenile justice, restorative justice, sexual assault, shame