Know Your Options

After experiencing a sexual assault, many victims feel overwhelmed.  There is no right way or wrong way to survive a sexual assault.  Every individual needs to do what is best for themselves, their safety, and their healing process.  Here are some options you have.  You can choose to do all of them, none of them, or only what feels right to you.  There are also way more options than we could ever list.  We trust that you will choose the route that is right for you.

Make a Police Report

If you would like someone to accompany you to make a police report, our advocates are available.  Oftentimes friends or family may not be able to sit in on police interviews with a victim because they may be additional witnesses in the case.  That being said, survivors of sexual violence have the right to have an advocate with them through the entire criminal justice process.  We can sit in on interviews with you so you do not have to do this alone.   If you would like to talk with an advocate about going through the reporting process with you, please call (316) 263-0185 and ask to speak with an advocate about reporting.

You can simply call 911 to make a report.  Making a report can be beneficial in a number of ways.  Making a police report can help with:

  • The offender being held accountable for the crime they committed.
  • Getting reimbursed for unexpected financial costs associated with the sexual assault – through the Crime Victims Compensation fund.
  • Feeling like you are taking back control of your situation.

Go to the Hospital for a Sexual Assault Exam

The goal of a sexual assault forensic exam is to make sure you are healthy and safe and that your healthcare needs are met.  A secondary goal is to collect forensic evidence for a criminal case.  If you are over the age of 18 and a gun or other weapon was not used in the crime, you can request a forensic exam without making a police report.  You simply have to check in at the ER (at either Wesley Medical Center or Via Christi St. Joe) and request an anonymous forensic exam by a sexual assault nurse examiner.

Both Via Christi St. Joe and Wesley provide acute exams after a sexual assault has happened.  An acute exam can be conducted within 96 hours of an incident.

Talk with your support system
Knowing who to talk to about experiencing sexual assault can be a tricky thing. Friends and family often provide some of our best support. Please know that no matter who you choose to tell, you deserve to be believed. You deserve to be supported.
Talk with a professional you trust
Many survivors are not sure they want to tell their close friends and family and instead would rather talk things through with a therapist. Again, you always know what is best for you and your healing process. WASAC does provide 12 sessions of free and confidential therapy for survivors of sexual violence. If you would like to talk to one of our therapist, please call (316) 263-0185 to schedule an appointment.

You may know another professional that you feel comfortable with. Always know, you deserve to be believed. You deserve to be supported.

College Students Can Make a Report to the Campus or University

Many colleges and universities have a way to report a sexual assault to the campus administration. This is not the same thing as making a report to law enforcement. Some survivors may want to do this if they are on campus with their perpetrator (i.e. live in the same residence hall or attend classes with the perpetrator). If you notify university officials you may be able to navigate your education in a way that feels safe for you.

Confidentiality

The Wichita Area Sexual Assault Center (WASAC) exists to assist survivors of sexual assault and their family and friends. All services at WASAC are free of charge. As you utilize services, you need to know about the policy on confidentiality and recordkeeping. If you have any questions about this information, please contact our office.

Feedback
We are interested in any feedback you may have regarding WASAC services. You are welcome to contact the Executive Director or the WASAC Board Chair to provide input. In addition, the Kansas Office of the Attorney General requires the following information be provided to you. This agency, along with the Office of the Attorney General, is interested in improving services available to victims in Kansas. If you have any suggestions or complaints about the services provided to you and wish to share them with the Office of the Attorney General, please call 1-800-828-9745 or complete the survey forms available at www.ksag.org.
Crime Victims’ Rights
As a victim of a crime you have rights afforded by the Kansas Bill of Rights for Crime Victims and information on Crime Victims Compensation. You may find this information on the Attorney General’s website www.ksag.org or by asking your advocate.

24-Hour Crisis Line
Information or help available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Crisis Line: (316) 263-3002 | Toll Free: (877) 927-2248

Record-keeping
WASAC keeps limited written documentation that is required for statistical and funding purposes. WASAC does not keep records related to survivor-advocate contact. No files are maintained on participants.

Non-Discrimination Policy—WASAC will not unlawfully discriminate against a program participant because of race, disability, color, gender, religion, age, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, veteran status, family status, military status, or political affiliation.

Any person, who believes that another person’s action or words constitutes discrimination, harassment, or in any other way violates the Non-Discrimination Policy, should report or complain about the situation as soon as possible. The report or complaint should be made to the Executive Director, the WASAC Board Chair, and/or the Board Human Resources Committee Chair. Any person who believes that she or he has been subject of discrimination may also file the compliant directly with the Kansas Human Rights Commission and/or the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and should do so within 180 days of the alleged discrimination.

Privacy & Confidentiality Policy
It is the policy of WASAC to hold confidential all communications, observations and information between survivors seeking services and advocates. This includes information about whether or not you are receiving services at WASAC and what services you receive. There are three exceptions to this policy:

When you give valid permission to WASAC to release information — This requires a signed WASAC Release of Information form that you have completed with an advocate. You must agree to the release of information and specific information to be released.
When required by law — Any staff or volunteer that is licensed as a social worker, counselor, or therapist is required to report child abuse and neglect, including child sexual abuse.
When required by court mandate — A subpoena is not the same as a court mandate.
24-Hour Crisis Line
Information or help available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Crisis Line: (316) 263-3002 | Toll Free: (877) 927-2248