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What does a Sexual Assault Service do?

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  • Written By: Misty Amber Brighton
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 08 November 2016
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A sexual assault service often takes care of people who have been a victim of sexual crimes. They might do this by providing counseling and medical treatment. In some cases, workers may visit individuals at the hospital or police station. Other times, they may provide educational workshops designed to raise awareness and teach prevention techniques to a wide variety of people.

Some centers operate a telephone hotline for people who have been sexually assaulted. When a call of this nature is received, a worker can give advice to the victim and perhaps offer to meet her somewhere to talk. People who have been a victim of rape in the past may want to call the hotline if they are suffering from anxiety because of it.

A sexual assault service might also provide medical treatment for those who have been attacked. Some locations have a sexual assault nurse on duty that can give the patient a physical examination and take care of her injuries. Other times, a worker might transport a client to a local hospital so this can be done.

Professional counseling might also be offered by a sexual assault service. This could include support groups or private sessions with a licensed social worker or psychologist. Many times, these services are offered at little or no cost to the victim.

Advocates who work at a sexual assault service often play a large role in bringing the perpetrators of these crimes to justice. They might do this by encouraging people to file charges against their attackers and advising them as to the necessary steps to do so. Should the offender be prosecuted, these workers sometimes testify in court or attend the trial proceedings with their client in order to provide moral support.

Trying to prevent sexual crimes is often a major function of a sexual assault service. Many centers routinely run ad campaigns in their local area to raise awareness of this issue. They might also hold classes or workshops instructing individuals how to avoid being a victim. Some seminars also focus on informing people about the consequences of committing sexual assault.

Although women are most often affected by sexual assault, men can also become victims. This crime also affects people of all income levels, ages, and nationalities. Sexual assault services strive to help anyone who has experienced this tragic event cope with their circumstances no matter what age, gender, or nationality they are.

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