Less than 7 days ago

If you have experienced rape, sexual assault or other sexual abuse within the past 7 days we recommend contacting SARC Teesside as soon as possible to explore the options available.

You might not have decided whether or not to report to the police yet, but due to the fact that this has happened so recently, there may be time critical services that could be offered while you are making those next step decisions. We want to ensure that your physical and sexual health needs are looked after and will not inform the police without your consent.

I want to report to the police

You can call the police on 101 or 999 yourself, or our SARC Support Coordinator can support you to do that here at the SARC, call SARC Teesside on 03333 44 8283 or complete a secure online self-referral’ link

  • You can speak to any of the SARC team to explore your options and make an informed decision based on that discussion.
  • If you have made an online self-referral, a SARC Care Coordinator will call you back at a convenient time for you
  • A specially trained officer can come to speak with you.
  • A doctor or nurse can be arranged to examine you to ensure that your physical and sexual health needs are looked after, this may include emergency contraception.
  • A doctor or nurse can be arranged to examine you for any forensic evidence (even if you have already washed, although there will be more evidence on your body if you feel able to wait until after the examination). 
  • We can offer you practical ongoing support from an Independent Sexual Violence Advisor (ISVA).
  • We can offer you support from specialist sexual violence counselling services.

Gathering Forensic Evidence

  • Try not to shower or bathe, even though this may be your first instinct.
  • Try not to clean your teeth.
  • If possible ring someone you trust and see if they can be with you. Do not change your clothes. If you do, put everything you were wearing into a plastic bag and keep it somewhere safe.
  • Avoid eating or drinking, especially alcohol. *
  • Don’t comb your hair.
  • Try to avoid going to the toilet until you have been examined. if the rapist used a condom, don’t get rid of it. *
  • Don’t dispose of any sanitary wear you may be using

* The SARC staff can take urine and mouth samples which enables you to have a drink and to use the toilet without concern.

If you are unsure about whether or not to report, SARC staff can in some circumstances arrange for information and evidence to be securely stored. This gives you time to consider your options.

I do not want to report to the police

It is your decision whether you want to report what has happened to you to the police or not.

You can speak to any of the SARC team to explore your options and make an informed decision based on that discussion.

  • Call SARC Teesside on 03333 44 8283 or complete a secure ‘online self-referral’ link
  • If you have called us, a SARC Support Coordinator will listen to what has happened to you and explain how we can help.
  • If you have made an online self-referral, a SARC Support Coordinator will call you back at a convenient time for you.
  • A doctor or nurse can be arranged to examine you to ensure that your physical and sexual health needs are looked after.
  • A doctor or nurse can be arranged to examine you for any forensic evidence which can be stored at the SARC, giving you the choice to report to the police and samples be used as evidence in the future. (Even if you have already washed, although there will be more evidence on your body if you feel able to wait until after the examination).
  • We can offer you practical ongoing support from an Independent Sexual Violence Advisor (ISVA).
  • We can offer you support from specialist sexual violence counselling services.

If you are in any danger you should ring the police by dialling 999.

Gathering forensic evidence, even if you are not wanting to report to the police

This is important if you want to keep the option of reporting open.

  • Try not to shower or bathe, even though this may be your first instinct.
  • Try not to clean your teeth.
  • If possible ring someone you trust and see if they can be with you. Do not change your clothes. If you do, put everything you were wearing into a plastic bag and keep it somewhere safe.
  • Avoid eating or drinking, especially alcohol. *
  • Don’t comb your hair.
  • Try to avoid going to the toilet until you have been examined. if the rapist used a condom, don’t get rid of it. *
  • Don’t dispose of any sanitary wear you may be using

* The SARC staff can take urine and mouth samples which enables you to have a drink and to use the toilet without concern.

Acceptance of Support and Privacy Information

If you decide to have support from SARC Teesside, your details will be stored on a secure electronic case management system and used to help you cope with, and recover from the impact of sexual violence. We will not share your information with anyone else without your permission, unless safeguarding issues are identified.

We will store your details for a period of seven years from the closure of your case. We will keep your information longer if you would like us to.

You have the right to:

  • Withdraw your consent at any time.
  • View any information held about you.
  • Request that any incorrect information is put right.
  • Have your details removed from the SARC system at any point.
  • Make a complaint if you are unhappy with the way in which your details are stored or used.

Graham Strange, Data Controller, Victim Services Lead, 0303 0401099.

 

The SARC Teesside support service Crisis Workers provide 24/7 support for all victims of rape and other sexual offences.

Female, 47, Medical Examination, Police Interview

Crisis worker support: Excellent, very supportive, listened and gave good advice. A massive thank you to the staff for being so supportive with my daughter and myself at this traumatic time for her. You do an excellent job.

Female, 47, Medical Examination, Police Interview
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