Existe Ayuda (Help Exists) Toolkit
skip navigationAbout the ToolkitGlossariesPresentationsToolsMessage From the DirectorRelated Resources


Sexual Assault Glossary

Principal Author of This Section: Laura Zárate
Co-authored by Jessica Coloma and edited by Oralia Díaz

Sexual Assault Glossary

Purpose: Promote uniform Spanish translations of printed and online outreach content.

User Audience: Bilingual victim advocates.

Participant Audience: English as a Second Language (ESL) and English Language Learner primary and secondary survivors.

While the translations of some sexual assault terms have been around for years and are readily understood by most Spanish-speaking victim advocates, other terms are relatively new and either have very limited or varied translations (e.g., sexual assault response team). To address this issue, a national workgroup comprising Latina victim advocates with cultural roots in Argentina, Brazil, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, and Venezuela assessed and voted on the best and most culturally competent definitions and translations.

This glossary—a compilation of terms commonly used in the sexual assault victim advocacy field—is the result of that assessment. When two options are offered in Spanish, the listing is in order of popularity as indicated in feedback received during the product demonstration stage and in online references.

The glossary is not intended to be an authoritative reference document with the only correct sexual assault translations. Its use by those who are not English/Spanish bilingual is strongly discouraged.

Before using this glossary, be mindful of specific dialect and educational considerations that may be unique to your target audience. It is also very important to keep up with evolving terminology.

Office for Victims of Crime
810 Seventh Street NW., Washington, DC 20531
The Office for Victims of Crime is a component of the Office of Justice Programs,
U.S. Department of Justice.
Office of Justice ProgramsOffice for Victims of Crime. Justice For Victims Justice for All.