Thank you for visiting our Report & Support pages.  We aim to review all reports and respond to "Report to an advisor" submissions in a 24hr period Monday to Friday.  Our platform is not monitored Saturday & Sunday. 
Should your need be urgent, please review all reporting options available to you, information of which can be found in our support pages, including reporting options to the Police or external specialist services. 

What is sexual violence?

Sexual violence is any type of sexual activity or contact that you do not consent to. It is unwanted sexual activity that can involve manipulation, pressure, bullying, coercion, intimidation, deception, threats or force. Acts of sexual violence can include rape, sexual assault, indecent exposure (also known as flashing), voyeurism (watching someone doing a private act without their consent) and sexual exploitation. Individuals may wish to access support for abuse which happened recently, or which happened some time ago. 

In order to consent to taking part in a sexual activity, an individual needs to agree by choice, and to have the freedom and capacity to make that choice. See this information from Rape Crisis England & Wales: What is sexual consent? | Rape Crisis England & Wales
“A person doesn’t have the freedom and capacity to agree to sexual activity by choice if:
  • They are asleep or unconscious.
  • They are drunk or ‘on’ drugs.
  • They have been ‘spiked’.
  • They are too young.
  • They have a mental health disorder or illness that means they are unable to make a choice.
  • They are being pressured, bullied, manipulated, tricked or scared into saying 'yes’.
  • The other person is using physical force against them.”
Tea and Consent

Thames Valley Police put together a video to highlight the issue of consent by comparing sex to drinking a cup of tea. The video is simple, effective and at times quite funny and provides clear instructions as to what constitutes sexual consent. Have a look at the video below:

Intimate image abuse
You may have experienced someone threatening to share private photos of you without your consent, or that they have already shared your private images, and they have the intent to cause you distress by doing so. It is important to know that both of these are now an offence in UK law. For more information on your rights and support available, you can visit Revenge Porn Helpline - https://revengepornhelpline.org.uk/

I’ve been affected by sexual violence- what can I do?

If you have experienced sexual violence, it may be hard to know what to do or how to feel. What happened was not your fault. What you do next is your choice.
  • Are you in immediate danger? If you are in immediate danger or seriously injured, you can contact the emergency services on 999 (or 112 from a mobile phone).
  • Finding a safe space.  If possible try and find somewhere you feel safe. If this isn't possible and you are on campus you can call security on 01772 892068.  
  • Try talking to a friend.  Consider asking a friend or someone you trust to be with you.
  • Text Support.  If you feel you need to talk to someone immediately you can contact Shout, a free 24/7 text service for anyone struggling to cope. TEXT Shout to 85258.
  •  The Millers Taxis ‘Take Me Home’ scheme allows you to use your UCLan ID Card as a deposit for journeys of £10 and under around Preston City Centre, and the university area, and pay later. You will then be emailed and instructed on how to collect your card. The number for Millers Taxis is 01772 884000. 
  • Download the UCLan SafeZone app to access a range of safety support and information such as raising an emergency alert, calling for help and setting a check in timer which alerts security if you do not reach your destination in a set amount of time. 
  • The Ask For Angela Scheme is nationwide and encourages anyone who may feel uncomfortable, unsafe or vulnerable while out in the city centre to ‘Ask for Angela’. Those situations could range from people meeting in person for the first time, predominantly, after making contact through online dating websites and apps; feeling unsafe due to excessive alcohol consumption or concerned about being followed while walking through the city centre. If people do not feel comfortable or have received unwelcome advances, they can approach a member of staff at one of the 52 establishments in Preston and ask if ‘Angela’ is in. Trained staff will then take them into to a safe area where they can explain their issue and get a taxi, friend or family member to pick them up. The employee can then tell the other person to leave or call police if they believe a criminal offence has occurred.
Sexual Assault Referral Centres (SARC)
At the SARC you can get medical care (including tests for sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy), specialist advice make a statement, and have forensic samples taken, without having to report the matter to the police. The forensic evidence is stored at the SARC in case you want to report the abuse to the police in the future.
Here are details of local SARCs in the North West. More details about their service and how to access them is available on their websites:
·         Cumbria – The Bridgeway https://www.thebridgeway.org.uk/contact/#
·         Greater Manchester – St Mary’s Centre https://www.stmaryscentre.org/
·         Merseyside – Safe Place Merseyside http://www.safeplacemerseyside.org.uk/

If you want to go to a SARC, it is useful to try to go as soon as you can get medical care and so important evidence can be preserved. You can also get help from an Independent Sexual Violence Adviser (ISVA) who can provide specialist advice and support. You can find an ISVAs by speaking to your local Sexual Assault Referral Centre, or Rape Crisis Centre

If you're thinking of reporting to the police, rape crisis have produced a useful list of things to think about. If the incident occurred outside of Lancashire you can ring the Counselling, Mental Health and Wellbeing team on 01772 893020 to discuss how to contact your local Police force if you are unsure.

UCLan’s Wellbeing Advisors have a range of experience in many areas, including domestic abuse and sexual violence. They have received specialist training from Women’s Aid, Paladin, Laura Richards and Lime Culture, as well as many having worked in refuges and for domestic and sexual abuse support services. Contact us on 01772 893020 or make a report to an advisor to arrange an appointment.

Lancashire Victim Services are offering a drop-in service with one of their Independent Sexual Violence Advocates at UCLan’s Preston Campus. This is on Tuesdays in term-time, between 12-2pm in the Wellbeing hub on the Upper Ground Floor of the Student Centre. You do not need an appointment. Please contact LVS or UCLan Wellbeing team if you would like any more information. 

Where can I get support:

Specialist Support services outside university

Independent Sexual Violence Advisors (ISVAs). ISVAs 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. ISVAs are there to provide information to ensure an individual can make a decision that is right for them.

Rape Crisis England and Wales - https://rapecrisis.org.uk/

National Male Survivor helpline - https://safeline.org.uk/services/national-male-helpline/

Galop is a charity that supports lesbian, gay, bi, trans, and queer people affected by sexual violence. https://galop.org.uk/types-of-abuse/sexual-violence/

Humraaz – specialist service in Lancashire led by and for black and minoritized women and girls, supporting survivors of violence, including sexual violence https://humraaz.co.uk/

Trust House Lancashire – specialist counselling for survivors of sexual violence https://trusthouselancs.org/counselling/

Revenge Porn Helpline - https://revengepornhelpline.org.uk/ 

Self-help guides
FREE E-learning course – Caring for yourself after sexual violence by Dr Jessica Taylor of Victim Focus https://www.victimfocus.org.uk/free-caring-for-yourself-after-sexual-violence
Women and Girls Network self-help resource guide - https://www.wgn.org.uk/get-informed/self-care

Support at UCLan
For Students 
The Student Wellbeing Service can help students experiencing a range of difficulties that are affecting their mental health and wellbeing. They offer a confidential, professional service, ensuring that students receive personal support, recognising people as individuals, all with different needs.

UCLan Students' Union Advice and Representation Centre. This is a free, confidential, impartial service where students can get advice and information on academic and personal issues, including advice on procedures and representation at hearings.

If you are a student in Halls, all of the residences have a team of Residence Officers and Assistant Residences Officer. The team can provide you with assistance and support to make your time with us an enjoyable one. Contact the Accommodation team on studentaccommodation@uclan.ac.uk

Mitigating Circumstances. If you feel your studies have been affected by what has happened you can consider applying for Mitigating Circumstances.

For Staff

People Team. If you are a member of staff or manager your People Team partner will be able to identify the support that’s available for you.

Trade Unions. There are three trade unions that represent staff at the University: Unison, Unite and UCU.

Staff Counselling. It’s important that you take care of yourself. The Staff Counselling Service offers a confidential, accessible counselling service to all its employees, in line with the University's mission statement and policies. If you are a member of staff, you can email the Staff Counselling service or call 01772 892329 to request an appointment.


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