Steps to take if you or a friend is the victim of sexual assault, rape or relationship violence
If you are a victim of a rape or sexual assault, seek medical attention immediately. Call University Police on campus at x5555, or off campus at 911. University Police can provide you with transportation to the hospital, and a SAF sexual assault advocate will meet you there if requested. Seek medical attention immediately at the Oswego Hospital Emergency Room, or any of the area hospital emergency rooms. In addition, CALL the services to Aid Families Abuse and Assault Hotline at 342-1600 or x7777 on campus.
University Police procedures for sexual misconduct and sexual assault
Sexual assault, including date/acquaintance rape and relationship violence is a serious crime in New York State. For further information regarding the definitions, specific crimes and penalties for sexual offenses in New York State, please refer to the University Police web site at www.oswego.edu/administration/police. The SUNY Oswego community provides many types of services to those who have been harmed by sexual offenses, including access to the Dean's Office, University Police, Judicial Affairs, Counseling Service, Walker Health Center, Oswego Hospital, Services to Aid Families (rape crisis advocates) and prevention education through the Lifestyles Center. University Police officers have received specialized training to attend to the needs and concerns of victims of sexual offenses and relationship violence. If you are a survivor of a sexual offense that occurred on campus, the University Police officer who takes your report will:
- Meet with you in a location where you will feel comfortable
- Not release your name to the press
- Will treat you and the case with sensitivity, respect, understanding and professionalism
- Assist you in arranging for medical care
- Assist you in contacting counseling and other resources in the community or on campus
- Fully investigate your case. You will be notified of the progress of the investigation and impending prosecution
- Be available to answer any question on the criminal process
- Consider your case seriously regardless of your gender
The University Police Department encourages the reporting of any sexual offense. National statistics indicate that rapists may repeat sexual predation until they are stopped by an arrest. Counseling speeds the healing process for survivors.
Steps to take if you are raped
- GO to a safe place.
- If you want to report the crime, NOTIFY the police immediately at 315.312.5555 (x5555) from a campus phone or 911. Reporting the crime can help you regain a sense of personal power and control and can also help to ensure the safety of other potential victims.
- CALL someone you trust and ask her or him to stay with you. PRESERVE all physical evidence of the assault. Do not shower, bathe, douche, or brush your teeth. SAVE all of the clothing you were wearing at the time of the assault and do not wash it. PLACE each item of clothing in a separate paper bag. Do not disturb anything in the area where the assault occurred.
- Go to a hospital emergency department. Even if you think that you do not have any physical injuries, you should still have a medical examination and discuss with a health care provider the risk of exposure to sexually transmitted diseases and the possibility of pregnancy resulting from the sexual assault.
- If you suspect that you may have been given a rape drug, ASK the hospital or clinic where you receive medical care to take a urine sample immediately.
- WRITE down as much as you can remember about the circumstances of the assault, including physical description of the assailant.
- TALK with a counselor who is trained to assist rape survivors about the emotional and physical impacts of the assault. You can contact a hotline RAINN 1-800-656- hope, SAF 342-1600 or x7777 (SAF) to find someone who understands the trauma of rape and knows how to help. Counseling Services (312-4416) can assist with counseling care.
- The college may accommodate a victim's request, on a case-by-case basis, to change an academic schedule or residence hall room in cases of an alleged sex offense. In addition, the college can help the survivor by confidential consultation with faculty for considerations of adjustments in assignments. Contact student advisement at 315.312.2240.
Suggestions on how to avoid acquaintance rape and unwanted sexual conduct
- Know your values and limits related to consensual sex and communicate them.
- Trust your instincts about situations and people.
- Be firm and assertive.
- Remember, silence is not consent. Say NO loudly and repeatedly.
- Physically defend yourself to get out of a bad situation.
- Avoid illegal drugs. Alcohol and other drugs affect your judgment and control. Over 90% of sexual assault cases involve the use of alcohol on the part of one or both parties.
- Do not assume that if you are with a friend or an acquaintance, nothing bad will happen. In over 90% of cases of sexual assault, the survivor knew the assailant.
- Devise an action plan in advance in case you are in a situation of possible acquaintance rape.
- Remove yourself from the area at the first sign that you feel uncomfortable or unsafe.
- Have a code word to use with friends to get you out of risky situations.