Sexual assault can happen to anyone, anytime, anyplace. It is not your fault. We know you couldn't control what happened.
Survivors of sexual violence often experience fear, shock, numbness, disbelief, shame, anger and feelings of a loss of control over their lives. These feelings do not mean you are going crazy. You have experienced a major crisis in your life. You may find it hard to trust people, and going about your normal routine may be a tremendous effort. Crises of any kind are easier to cope with when there are supportive people close by, people who accept and understand your feelings; people who can help you obtain information you may need, and people who care.
Attending to your needs in a safe, non-judgmental setting is S.A.R.T.'s priority. Caring and supportive Resource Team advocates are available to listen to your concerns, answer questions and present various options.
Rape, sexual assault, incest and sexual abuse are not acts of sex. They are violent crimes that use sex as a weapon to overpower, humiliate or hurt another person. Anyone can be victimized regardless of sex, age, race, sexual orientation, social or economic background. Remember, it is not your fault. We know you couldn't control what happened.
While you are in the Emergency Department you will be cared for by a nurse who has special training in helping victims of sexual assault. Your S.A.R.T. nurse will explain what will happen while you are in the Emergency Department and will answer any questions you may have. She will also offer emotional support and guidance.
Your S.A.R.T. nurse will carry out a special exam so that she can:
- Collect and save evidence that will be needed if the assailant goes to trial.
- Evaluate your risk of pregnancy.
- Offer you medication to reduce your risk of contracting a sexually transmitted disease.
- Further evaluate and document any injuries.
If you have injuries requiring treatment, the S.A.R.T. nurse will ask the Emergency Department staff to see you. They will evaluate and treat your injuries. This examination is separate from the one done to collect evidence. The charges associated with injury treatment are not covered by the S.A.R.T. Program and will be billed to your medical insurance, or other arrangements can be made.
Call 507-385-2610 for more information.