I've Been Sexually Assaulted... What Now?
If you have been sexually assaulted, it is NOT your fault! You didn't deserve or cause what happened.
As soon as you can, seek help! Find a safe place and call the police, a family member, a friend, or call the Women’s Resources of Monroe County 24HR Crisis Hotline at 570-421-4200. You do not need to give your name to speak with a hotline counselor. Our services are free and confidential!
Consider going to a hospital, even if you don't think that you have been injured. You may have internal injuries or have been exposed to a sexually transmitted disease. If applicable, you can also learn about options concerning pregnancy.
SART - Sexual Assault Response Team
Women’s Resources of Monroe County has teamed up with key members of the community to help survivors of sexual assault through the SART program!
SART is a team that provides services for sexual assault survivors. The team uses representatives from healthcare, law enforcement, the local sexual assault center (Women’s Resources of Monroe County), the county District Attorney or Assistant District Attorney, and Children and Youth Services.
If you’ve been sexually assaulted and choose to seek help at the Emergency Department (St. Luke’s-Monroe or LVHN-Pocono), a SART is immediately activated and all members of the SART team will be notified immediately to make their way to meet the survivor. You will be examined for injuries, and evidence will be collected in case you decide to press charges, either now or later.
It’s important to note that hospitals are required to report any injury caused by a criminal act, such as rape, to the police, however, you are in control of how much you want to participate in the SART, if at all. You can opt out of or stop the exam at any point, refuse or reschedule the police interview, and reject the participation of the advocate.
Things To Keep In Mind Before Going To The Hospital:
- Do NOT shower, go to the bathroom, brush your teeth, drink, eat, or destroy or wash any of the clothing you were wearing.
- Wear the clothes you were wearing at the time of the assault to the hospital, but take a change of clothes with you.
- To preserve evidence, try not to disturb the scene of the assault.
If you think you may have been drugged, tell the nurse and request a urine test. Don't go to the bathroom until you get to the hospital; if you can't wait, catch the urine in a jar and bring it to the hospital. Drugs are usually only detectable for the first 72 hours after ingestion. The first urine voided is the best chance for proving a date rape drug was used, but it also will identify any other drugs that are in your system.
- If the survivor chooses to move forward with a forensic exam, a SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner) or SAFE (Sexual Assault Forensic Examiner) will conduct the exam.
- A Women’s Resources of Monroe County advocate will be present to provide support, assistance, and information to the survivor. The survivor is in control of how much involvement they want from the advocate.
- If an advocate from Women’s Resources is not present, the survivor can ask the hospital to call one to come out
- A law enforcement officer will respond to the crime, interview the survivor, and investigate the sexual assault. The survivor can choose whether or not they want to speak to the officer.
- The District Attorney or Assistant District Attorney will determine if there’s enough evidence to make an arrest and take the case to court.