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Rape and Sexual Assault

What is rape and sexual assault?

Rape is defined as:
"Penetration by a penis of somebody's vagina, anus or mouth without their consent. It can be committed against men or women but since it involves penile penetration can only be committed by men".

Sexual Assault is defined as:
Sexual assault can be perpetrated by both men and women. Sexual assaults refer to sexual touching rather than a physical assault. This includes touching:
    •    With any part of the body
    •    With anything else
    •    Through anything (clothing) and in particular includes touching amounting to penetration

All of the above is without consent.
It's also a criminal offence to cause a person to engage in sexual activity without consent.

What is consent?
Consent is defined as "a person consents if s/he agrees by choice and has the freedom or capacity to make that choice".

Click the play button to view Tea & Consent video

How can I support someone who has been raped or assaulted?

When supporting someone who has been raped or sexually abused it may be helpful to follow these good practice guidelines:
    •    Listen, tell them you believe them and they're not to blame
    •    Empathise and dont judge or blame the person for what happened
    •    Suggest that they don't wash or change their clothes if the assault has just happened. Important evidence could be lost if the person decides to report the incident to the police
    •    Give them space - an important part of the healing process is that they start to feel in control over their life
    •    Help them explore their options and respect the decisons they make. Options could include:
    •    Reporting the incident ot the police
    •    Visiting a Sexual Assault Referral Centre where forensic evidence can be stored annonymously for a specific period of time; in case the survivor of sexual violence does not want to reprot at present but may change their mnd in the future. SARC offers a crisis response to sexual violence for adults. They can take and store forensic evidence, offer advice and referrals to other services, undertaking medical examination an crisis intervention on the day
    •    Appointment at the GUM clinic ( New Cross Hospital) for screening and treatment in regards to sexual health
    •    Visit to a GP
    •    Referral to a local Independant Sexual Violence Advisor Service: a trained professional who can explore these options further, offering advice an support in relation to the criminal justice system, emotional support and make referrals to counselling services 

What help is available after rape and or assault?

  • An Independent Sexual Advice Advisor (ISVA), please call The Haven Wolverhampton on 08000 194 400
  • Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) Horizon SARC 0808 168 5698 (Based In Walsall)
  • The Police - in an emergency call 999, or 101 in a non-emergency
  • Survivors UK (www.survivorsuk.org)
  • GUM on 01902 444444
  • A&E or a doctor - for medical treatment however they will not be able to the help and support available through a SARC
  • The Rape Crisis national freephone helpline on 0808 802 9999 (12-2.30pm, 7-9.30pm and 3-5.30pm weekdays rapecrisis.org.uk).



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