Join Us in a Movement

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month

The Sex Abuse Treatment Center (SATC) commemorates Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) every April to raise awareness of sexual violence in Hawai'i. This year, SATC is partnering with high schools, colleges, and universities across the state to educate about healthy and [respect]ful relationships through the [respect]™ campaign. Through prevention education, we promote positive messages, safe behaviors, and healthy relationships. We want to create a community where everyone is treated with [respect] and sexual violence is prevented!

Know the line. [respect] the line. Protect the line.

In the context of sexual activity, [respect] is essential. Without respect, sexual activity can easily cross into sexual violence.

A culture of [respect] can prevent sexual violence.

Respect is a concept that can represent a number of things to different people. However, at its core, it reflects a thoughtful consideration of others. Respect builds healthy, safe relationships and communities.

Healthy relationships and positive experiences are based on respect. It doesn't matter who it's with or where it is... it could be with your partner, your classmate, a friend of a friend, or even a stranger you don't know.

Respect means knowing where the line is and not crossing it. It means engaging in open communication, not assuming consent, accepting others decisions and limits, watching out for your friends when you are out, resisting peer pressure to go along with or join in on sexually offensive behavior or harassment, and having empathy and compassion for victims.

We can all play a role in preventing sexual violence in our communities. It starts by standing up for respect. For yourself and your friends.

Know the line.

It is important to know the line between consensual sexual activity and sexual violence.

Some facts about sexual violence...

Most sexual assaults are committed by someone the victim knows. This might be a friend, acquaintance, or intimate partner. It is often someone trusted. Many sexual assaults occur in either the victim or the offender's home. Weapons are rarely used. Instead, offenders trick, pressure, coerce, threaten or intimidate victims into unwanted sexual activity.

Alcohol use often plays a role in sexual violence. Alcohol is a factor in a majority of sexual assaults, especially those involving persons between the ages of 18-29. Alcohol use or intoxication does not cause or excuse sexual violence. Alcohol does make it easier for people to misinterpret signals and blur the lines of [respect]. Consent must be clear and freely given. Sex without consent is rape.

Bullying can lead to sexual violence. Boys and girls who engage in bullying behaviors, like name-calling, taunting, spreading rumors, and homophobic teasing, are also more likely to sexually harass others later. Sexual harassment is a form of sexual violence. Bullying, like all forms of sexual violence, is about power and control. Stopping bullying early can prevent it from escalating later.

[respect] the line.

Respect others by obtaining consent for all sexual activity.

Engage in open communication. Ask others what's on their mind. Actively listen to what they have to say. Show others their thoughts and beliefs matter to you.

Pay attention to body language. People don't always express themselves with words. Their bodies' may be saying a lot without the person saying anything at all. If someone you are with seems distracted or distant, ask if he/she is ok.

Value and accept differences of opinion. You may not always agree with others, but you can acknowledge their choices and beliefs without making them feel bad or guilty, or pressuring them to change their mind.

Imagine what it is like in someone else’s shoes. Instead of judging, try to understand someone else’s feelings as if they were your own. Having empathy and compassion for others are ways to show [respect].

There is no respect in bullying. Put-downs and intimidation are painful and can have long-lasting effects on people’s lives. Respect is earned by being kind to others, not making them fear you.

Protect the line.

Bystanders can help prevent sexual violence from happening.

While most people do not commit sexual violence, many people are bystanders to sexually offensive talk or behavior, particularly when alcohol is involved. This may include, witnessing forms of sexual aggression or harassment toward others, or hearing others make degrading jokes or brag about tricking or forcing someone into sexual activity. By standing up to this behavior and intervening to stop it, upstanders can spread the message of [respect] and prevent opportunities for sexual violence to take place.

There are different ways to encourage [respect] when people act disrespectfully. What can you do if you hear something that might be offensive or hurtful?

  • Say something. Ask questions, convey disapproval, or engage the person in a thoughtful dialogue. Making the person reflect on their own insensitive remarks can help the person to see just what was wrong with the statements or actions in the first place.
  • Stay silent. Oftentimes, people are just looking for attention, for laughs, or for a rise out of people. Sometimes silence can make the loudest statement.
  • Be creative. You can stop aggressive or harassing behavior and prevent violence before it escalates. It can be as simple as interrupting and distracting the conversation: "Do you have the time?", "Did you see that?", "I need to tell you something.", "I've been looking for you!"

Do the right thing. Hold the people around you accountable to [respect]. Encourage others to join the movement and live respectfully.

[respect] in Action

The Sex Abuse Treatment Center’s [respect]™ campaign educates and empowers all individuals to take action to prevent sexual violence. We have a number of educational resources to help make this happen in our community:

[respect] Toolkit & Training

The [respect] toolkit is an instructional resource that combines a number of interactive, user-friendly educational materials designed to deepen understanding and practice of [respect]ful behaviors.

Coupled with specialized training from SATC educators, the toolkit gives community partners the knowledge and skills to share information about the prevention of sexual violence.

The [respect] toolkit and training:

  • Provide an understanding of the campaign’s messages: Know the line. [respect] the line. Protect the line.
  • Outline definitions and dynamics of sexual violence.
  • Educate about communication and consent.
  • Build awareness on how to intervene as a concerned bystander.

[respect] 2.0 with Honolulu Theater for Youth

The [respect] 2.0 program is a joint collaboration between the Honolulu Theatre for Youth (HTY) and The Sex Abuse Treatment Center (SATC), combining live theater with technology as a platform to discuss sexual violence prevention in an age of social media. The goal is to challenge young people to explore the serious repercussions of sexually abusive behavior, to empower them to establish safe, respectful relationships, and become active participants in prevention.

The [respect] 2.0 program is a dynamic, interactive approach to learning. It involves the use of multi-media technology in the art of storytelling, performed in a high school classroom setting with actors facilitating a discussion with the audience.

Program Components:

  • One 45- to 90-minute interactive play performed in high school classrooms of up to 40 students
  • Discussion integrated throughout the performance involving the audience and facilitated by the actors
  • Student evaluation survey completed at the end of the program

Rally for [respect]

High school students come together every April for Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) to Rally for [respect]!

A collaboration between Honolulu Theater for Youth (HTY) and SATC, the rally brings together artists and youth to engage in creative workshops designed to convey [respect].

Artists educate youth using music, theater, culture, visual art, dance, and spoken word, to express their vision for [respect]ful relationships and safe communities free of sexual violence. Smartphones become catalysts for social change. Participants document, hashtag and share the day’s events with their peers via social media (check it out: #respecthawaii).

These provocative expressions culminate in an exhilarating rally and call to action to create a culture of [respect]. The youth led the way with infectious enthusiasm as [respect] ambassadors, pledging to carry the message forth to their communities.


SATC joined forces with the Hawai'i Coalition Against Sexual Assault (HCASA) and Shooter’s Film Production to produce a 9-minute educational film to highlight the high risk intersection between alcohol and sexual violence, and encourage bystander intervention. The purpose of the film is to start the conversation about alcohol-related sexual assault amongst emerging adults. Screenings of Shots and tailored education around the intersection of alcohol use and sexual violence are available through SATC’s Prevention & Education Services.

K-12 Sexual Violence Prevention Curricula

SATC developed a K-12 Sexual Violence Prevention Curricula to deliver in Hawai'i’s classrooms. Designed to meet Hawai'i’s health education standards, the curricula address ways to stay safe, prevent sexual violence victimization and perpetration, and develop healthy, respectful relationships.

Community Events

SATC educators are available to bring the [respect] message to the community through participation in events, presentations, health and wellness fairs, community meetings, and other opportunities. Together we can build a culture of [respect] in Hawai'i and prevent sexual violence from happening in our islands.

Share #respecthawaii on Social Media

For more information about the [respect] campaign, education programs, and ways to get involved, please contact the Sex Abuse Treatment Center’s Prevention & Education Services at (808) 535-7600.