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Bisexuality and Intimate Partner Violence

Bisexual people experience intimate partner violence at shockingly higher rates than heterosexual, gay, and lesbian people, yet their unique needs are rarely the focus of LGBTQIA+ training for domestic violence and sexual assault advocates. A report sponsored by the CDC found that 61% of bisexual women were stalked, assaulted or raped by an intimate partner in her lifetime, as compared to 44% of lesbian women, and 35% of heterosexual women. This presentation explores why bisexual people are at higher risk of victimization due to common misunderstandings of bisexual identity and fetishization, how their needs differ from other members of the LGBTQIA+ community, and why this specific identity is falling through the cracks of both DV advocates' and LGBTQIA+ organizers' efforts to support victims. Finally, this presentation will highlight an innovative approach taken by a rural advocacy organization to address this problem through grassroots organizing and community partnership.