All you need to know About Victim Assistance
and Sexual Assault Programs in Connecticut
Let us first begin b y understanding what sexual assault is in simple terms, “Sexual assault is a representation of action where a person deliberately and without the person’s consent sexually touches or coerce or suppresses a person to immerse in a sexual act against their will.” Sexual assault is aggravated by a desire to dominate and humiliate the victim in the most intimate way possible. Sexual assault is about power and control. It is a violent crime and is often intentional.
When Does A Sexual Assault Victim Need Assistance? (remove “sexual”)
When an act of sexual assault occurs, that time is terrifying, perplexing, and mostly full of emotions for the victim/survivor. The situation itself is so confusing that the person may not know how to react. Even though the crime of sexual assault is more common among females, many male individuals are also victims of such crimes. So how does a victim know when to seek assistance?
- When an individual is raped without consent
- When there is inappropriate touching
- When there is vaginal, anal, or oral penetration (however slight) without consent
- When an individual is denied contraception or protection against sexually transmitted infections
- When there is sexual intercourse that you say no toor did not consent to
- When there is attempted rape
- When there is child molestation
- When a child is force to look at sexual body parts or pornography
- When someone is taking advantage of you when in a vulnerable situation
- When an individual is forced to perform sexual acts for monetary returns of illegal activity
- When the individual is given death threats to perform sexual activity
Sexual assault is anything that forces a person to join in unwanted sexual contact or attention.
What is WFC’s Sexual Assault Crisis Services (SACS)?
The WFC Sexual Assault Crisis Services (SACS) Program provides services to 28 towns, including the shoreline, New Haven County, and Middletown County. SACS offers confidential support services for survivors of sexual assault and their loved ones. All of our direct services are free and confidential. SACS also partners with local schools, colleges, and universities to provide educational programs. All of our services, direct and educational are provided by certified sexual assault victim advocates who undergo training and have privileged communication as defined by Connecticut state law CGS § 52-146k. All of our services are offered to all types of survivors regardless of their race, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, immigration status, ethnicity, nationality, and spiritual/religious affiliations.
What does the SACS program consist of?
The program consists of the following free victim service programs for the survivors to confide in:
1. 24×7 hotline- We are a part of the 24-hour crisis hotline available for individuals when they feel they might be in a crisis or even when they feel isolated. The following are the hotline numbers
- WFC’s Direct Hotline: 203-235-4444
- Hotline numbers Toll-free: 1-888-999-5545 in English, and the other one is in Espanol 1-888-568-8332
- Spanish-speaking and male counselors are also available.
2. Medical Examination- Sexual assault victims can choose to undergo a medical examination for evidence and further investigation. We make provisions to meet the victim in the hospital to provide emotional and mental support during the medical examination.
3. Support at the police station and court hearings– WFC understands the kind of courage it requires for a survivor to speak about the incident (it is almost like reliving it again). We assist the survivor in meeting with the police department and provide support when you give your statement. We also attend court hearings with the survivor and provide additional support during the entire process as well as assistance with and during the victim impact state.
4. Peer-to-Peer counseling and support groups- The SACS program provides supportive crisis counseling forall primary and secondary victims and their loved ones. The program also offers a variety of support groups for sexual assault survivors.
5. Bilingual counselors- We make full provisions to provide bilingual counselors or sign language interpreters.
7. Confidentiality support: We understand the trauma, and mental anguish a victim goes through. We also know sometimes, an individual may not be ready to talk about it to anyone. WFC has helped Connecticut sexual victims since 1889, so we understand and practice various confidential support services and support groups for survivors of sexual violence and their loved ones.
8. Short-Term Shelter-Victims who are 18 years old or older can be provided short-term shelter who need a safe place after the assault while working with local violence centers to ensure the long-term safety of the sexual survivors.For those who are looking into utilizing the bed should reach out to the WFC SACS direct hotline at 203-235-4444.
9. SACS Prevention Education- Sexual Assault Crisis Services offers programs on sexual violence prevention programs. Various sexual assault awareness presentations are given to schools, universities, and community groups. We also aim to deliver training programs for professionals, including childcare workers, teachers, and law enforcement.
WFC serves Connecticut communities with programs designed to build healthy families now and in the future.
Contact us today at 203-235-9297 or [email protected] to know more about SACS.