Raising awareness of sexual assault referral centres
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As part of Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week, we are sharing the NHS campaign, raising awareness of sexual assault referral centres (SARCs).
The purpose of a referral centre is to provide a safe space and dedicated care for anyone who has been raped, sexually assaulted, or abused, 24/7. They offer a range of NHS services including, crisis care, medical examinations, emergency contraception and testing for sexually-transmitted infections. They can also refer you for mental health support.
We will always urge you to report any sexual assault to us, but if you do not feel the time is right, SARCs have forensic medical examination facilities which you can use, and their trained staff will provide support for you. Any evidence gathered will be stored for a length of time and if you decide to report the assault to us, this evidence will be there for us to use.
The NHS campaign highlights these vital support services at a critical time, with new data showing that out of over 4,000 respondents in England, over half of respondents (56%) who have been sexually assaulted or abused did not seek help from any organisation or service after the incident.
Nearly half of these (46%) cited fear of being believed as the biggest barrier to not accessing help. A similar number said they didn’t know or weren’t sure where to get help if they had been sexually assaulted, and 72% of respondents are currently unaware of the support available via the NHS.
In 2021, ManKind found 1 in 10 men had experienced rape and 1 in 7 men have been coerced into sex. Research also suggests that young men are less likely to report abuse and are underrepresented in specialist services.
If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual harassment, sexual abuse or sexual assault and want to report this to us please use our new reporting tool on our website, which can be found here https://bit.ly/34GSl4Q
For a list of organisations who can assist you, please visit our page https://bit.ly/3AaFAd7.
You can also contact us using any of the below methods:
Facebook – send us a private message to /DerbyshireConstabulary
Twitter – direct message our contact centre on @DerPolContact
Website – complete the online contact form https://bit.ly/3wX8Fr3.
Phone – call us on 101. In an emergency always ring 999.