North West Sexual Violence Awareness Week aims to raise awareness of sexual violence and the support services available to survivors. It takes place from 3-10 November 2022.
The phrase sexual violence is an umbrella term that refers to any unwanted sexual act or activity such as rape, sexual abuse, sexual assault, sexual harassment etc.
Statistics show that there is an increase in sexual offences but the number of people reporting or seeking support is very low in comparison. There can be several reasons as to why a survivor chooses not to speak out, such as fear of not being believed, not knowing where to go etc. All of these feelings are normal.
This awareness week aims to reassure survivors, and anyone supporting them, that they will be listened to and how they can access support, with survivor support packs produced for anyone in need of resources and support outside. The University also has support on offer for survivors, including specially trained Sexual Violence and Harassment Officers who you can contact you to offer guidance and support, as well as guide you through the reporting process.
Reporting incidents of sexual violence or harassment
Students and staff can report an incident using the University’s Report + Support system. Unless you are in immediate danger or are reporting an emergency to the police, we encourage you to do this as your first action in the reporting process so that we can most effectively support you and guide you through your next steps. You can choose to do this anonymously or you can request support from an advisor. If you choose to talk to an advisor they will be able to talk through the options and support available to you, in confidence.
If sexual harassment escalates into violence, threats or sexual assault, you can report this to the police by calling 101 or contacting local police. If you or someone you’re with is in immediate danger, or it is a time-sensitive emergency, call the police on 999.
Mental Health & Counselling Service – The University’s team of professional counsellors, psychotherapists and mental health workers offers confidential support.
The St Mary’s Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) and Manchester Rape Crisis both have Independent Sexual Violence Advisors (ISVA’s) who are trained to look after the needs of a survivor of rape or sexual violence to ensure they receive the best possible care and understanding. Contact them and ask to speak to an advisor in confidence.
Survivors Manchester offers a range of services for men who have experienced sexual violence at any point in their lives.
Galop is a charity that supports lesbian, gay, bi, trans, and queer people affected by sexual violence.