Sexual violence is any unwanted sexual act or activity. This includes, but is not limited to, rape, sexual assault, sexual abuse, sexual harassment and sexual exploitation.
Sexual violence can be perpetrated by a stranger or by someone you know (even somebody you are in a relationship with). Sexual violence can happen to anyone. No-one ever deserves or asks for it to happen.
All genders can be victims of sexual violence.
The law says that a person consents to sexual activity if they agree by choice and have the freedom and capacity to make that choice.
If you said yes out of fear or were incapacitated through alcohol, drugs, or mental health for example, then you didn’t agree by choice and didn’t have the freedom or capacity to make that choice.
If you froze or your body 'flopped' or went limp through fear, if you didn't say the word 'no' or weren't able to speak at all through shock, if you didn't shout or fight or struggle, it does NOT mean you gave your consent for what happened to you.
This video might help you understand consent a bit more.
What you choose to do next is completely up to you. We hope that you feel supported in whichever decision you take. It is important that you are empowered and aware of your options, however, this is likely to be a difficult time and long process.
- Report the incident to the University. The University will guide you through your different options and, if you want to, you can make a formal complaint to the University. We will then investigate the incident and take any appropriate action under the University’s disciplinary procedures. In order to make a complaint to the University you can contact the Security Team or Student Services and ask to speak with someone confidentially. The University will only be able to take disciplinary action against individuals that are connected to the University (students, staff or contractors).
- Report the incident to the police. You can do so at any time by calling 101, or 999 in an emergency. The incident does not have to be recent for you to report it. The police have specially trained officers across various teams and depending on your situation will contact you and explain the process to you. You should preserve any possible physical evidence you may have, such as text messages, screenshots, records of phone conversations or voicemails, photos or emails. The police will arrange for a forensic examination to be carried out if appropriate. You will also be asked to make a statement. In the event of a recent sexual assault (within previous 7 days), it is advised that you do not:
- wash any part of the body, including hair
- brush teeth
- eat or drink (including non-essential medication)
- change clothes (if you do, you should avoid washing them - instead place them in a clean plastic bag)
- go to the toilet (including change tampons or sanitary towels)
- tidy up or remove items that the assailant has touched or clean the area where the assault has occured
- Unsure about reporting? Visit the local Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC). If you’re not sure whether or not you want to report the incident to the police, you might choose to go directly to a SARC. SARCs are funded by Public Health. The closest SARC to Loughborough is at Juniper Lodge in Leicester. The SARC can offer a forensic examination, medical services and sexual health services They can keep hold of any forensic evidence so that this can be used if you choose to report the incident to the police at a later stage. They can provide you with support and specialist counselling services. If you are not in Loughborough you can find your nearest SARC through the NHS Choices website.
- Take no action. You can still access the support available on campus through the Counselling Service or the Medical Centre/your GP practice if you think you need some medical attention. You can also still choose to visit a SARC, and any other off-campus support service, such as United Against Violence and Abuse (UAVA).
The University has trained staff who will be able to help guide and support you through the options above.
t. (0116) 2733 330
www.juniperlodge.org.uk Loughborough University Counselling Service
Confidential, emotional support. Bridgeman Building
t. (01509) 222158
www.lboro.ac.uk/counselling/ Loughborough University Medical Centre
t. (01509) 222061
www.lborounimedicalcentre.co.uk Sexual Health Services
Loughborough Health Centre
t. 0800 318 908 or 0300 124 0102
(lines open Mon-Fri 9am – 7.30pm and Saturdays 9am – 1.30pm) United Against Violence and Abuse (UAVA)Domestic and sexual abuse service for Leicestershire and Rutlandt. 0800 80 20 028
www.uava.org.uk Jasmine House, Leicester Rape Crisis
Free, confidential telephone and face-to-face counselling and support to female survivors of sexual violence.
t. (0116) 255 8852
www.jasminehouse.org.uk TRADESexual Health Advice for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Trans men and woment. (0116) 254 1747
www.tradesexualhealth.com The Quetzal Project
Support for women recovering from childhood sexual abuse
4-16 Talbot Lane,
t. 0116 2539103
www.quetzal.org.uk First StepAn organization for male survivors of sexual abuse and rape Phone: 01162548535