By visiting this webpage, you’ve already begun the process of getting help and recovering from your assault. You can continue that process by following the steps listed below, but especially by telling someone you trust and seeking out appropriate support from the University. Remember: you aren’t alone.
Steps to Take
1. Get Medical Assistance
If you’ve been sexually assaulted, get medical attention as soon as possible to check for any physical injury (it might not be immediately apparent). In addition, preventive treatments for sexually transmitted infections, HIV and pregnancy are available and must be considered as soon as possible. And, if there is a chance you may wish to report the incident (either now or in the near future), evidence should be collected within 96 hours of the assault. At Binghamton, victims of sexual assault can contact the University Police; go to the Decker Student Health Services Center or contact Harpur’s Ferry to be transported to a local emergency room for medical treatment.
At the hospital, a SAFE (sexual assault forensics examiner) nurse will be there to help you. A SAFE nurse is a registered nurse with special training in providing care to people who have been sexually assaulted. This nurse conducts medical forensic examinations and can serve as an expert witness. SAFE examinations can be conducted locally at UHS Binghamton General Hospital and Lourdes Hospital. Learn more about the SAFE program.
Hospital personnel will contact a victim’s advocate from the Broome County Crime Victims Assistance Center to be with you and help you through this traumatic event. The advocate can provide support during the medical exam, as well as help with medical, legal, financial* and counseling referrals if you wish. You may decline this assistance.
*NOTE: If the crime is reported, most crime victims incur no out-of-pocket expenses. This includes expenses for the forensic exam and any necessary prophylactic drugs. See the New York State Office of Victim Services website or the Crime Victims Assistance Center website for more information.
The Decker Student Health Services Center can assist you in getting follow-up medical care after the initial examination.
2. Speak to a Counselor
You may experience a wide range of feelings in the days, months and years following a sexual assault. Healing takes time, and everyone reacts to trauma in a unique way. The University Counseling Center provides counseling for survivors of rape and other forms of sexual violence. Or if you prefer, we can provide a referral to off-campus counseling services.
3. File a Report
You aren’t required to press charges or file a report, but you may choose to do so. If you choose to report the sexual assault, there are various options available to you, including:
** NOTE: Some of the options above require you to provide your name and contact information, but under most circumstances your name can be kept confidential if you request it.
** NOTE: If the assault happened off campus and you report it to the University Police, officers will assist you and take your report. However, they must refer you to the police department that has jurisdiction where the assault occurred. That police department will perform the investigation.
4. Find a Support Group / Talk to a Friend or Family Member
Contact the University Counseling Center at 607-777-2772 or the Interpersonal Violence Prevention Coordinator for information about support groups.
5. Use Campus and Community Resources
We’ve compiled a comprehensive list of campus and community websites and documents that may be helpful to you. See our Resources webpage.
Last Updated: 3/26/14