What to do if you are raped or sexually assaulted
When you are working you agree with the customer what services you will offer.
This is called consensual sex.
It is not OK for a customer to have sex with you in any way that you did not agree to.
An example of this would be:
- You agree to oral sex with a condom but the customer removes the condom and forces you to give him oral without protection
- You agree to vaginal sex and the customer tries to have anal sex with you instead
- You agree to have sex with a condom and the customer intentionally removes the condom.
If the customer makes you complete a service you have not agreed to or any person forces you to have sex against your will then this is rape or sexual assault.
If this has happened to you then we would like to offer you as much support as possible.
There is no right or wrong way to respond in situations of sexual violence. When your safety has been violated, it is important that you begin to feel safe again and able to make your own decisions.
In London there is a specialist rape and sexual assault service called The Havens. The Havens has a team of trained medical professionals who take forensic evidence and provide ongoing support.
If you have been raped or sexually assaulted you can call the Police on 999 and report what has happened.
They will arrange medical support if needed and for forensic examination to be taken.
A forensic examination involves being examined by a specially trained clinician who will collect samples, take information about the assault, and clothing where necessary.
If you are unsure if you want to involve the Police you can contact The Havens directly to discuss the options available.
You can choose to have a forensic examination and may decide later to report the incident to the Police.
(There is also a website called mydeccision that gives you a step by step guide for rape and sexual assault victims).
At the Havens you will be given any immediate aftercare you need:
- Emergency contraception
- Hepatitis B vaccinations
- Post Exposure Prophylaxis PEP (if you are at risk of contarcting HIV from the assault).
Follow Up Care
The Havens will arrange follow up care for you either at their service or another sexual health clinic of your choice.
This will be for:
- A check-up for sexually transmitted infections. (This is recommended no earlier than 2 weeks after the assault).
- A blood test to check for HIV. (This is recommended 3 months after the assault).
- A pregnancy test.
Emotional support is also available from a Clinical Psychologist and Counsellor.
If you decide to go to The Havens for forensic evidence to be taken it is very important that you do the following:
- Keep all evidence for example used condoms, clothes/underwear in a plastic bag.
- Try not to wash your body or clean your teeth, so that evidence can be preserved.
Contact The Havens as soon as possible.
Call 020 7247 4787, line open 24 hours.
If you do not speak English, get a friend who can speak English to call the number.
Your friend must ask for a return call on your mobile in your language.
The service will use a telephone interpreter who will talk your options through with you.
It is best that you use your real name when you report the assault. The Havens is part of the NHS.