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What you can do if sexual violence has happened to you

You deserve to be safe. 
We can help.

What you can do if you have survived an incident of Sexual Violence:

 

Immediately following the incident…
Get yourself to a safe place (e.g. friend’s place, RA office, etc.)
 
Call Public Safety (518-783-2999) or Police (911) if you or someone else is in immediate danger.  (Sometimes students are reluctant to get help because of concerns that their own behavior may be a violation of the student code of conduct – i.e. an underage student has been drinking. At Siena we believe in safety first.  Learn more about the Siena College Welfare of the Community Policy.)
 
Call a supportive person such as a friend, family member, RA, RD, and/or an advocate from a crisis line.  You deserve to be safe!  Learn more about safety and support services on and off campus.

Save evidence
·         Important physical evidence can be gathered up to 96 hours after an assault.
·         Try not to brush your teeth, eat, drink, chew gum, or smoke.
·         Try not to urinate. If you can’t hold it, don’t wipe and, if possible, save a specimen of the urine.
·         Try not to shower, wash or change your clothes.
·         If you do change your clothes, save all of the clothing you were wearing at the time of the assault, as well as any bedding. Place each item of clothing/bedding in a separate paper bag. Do not use plastic bags.
·         Do not disturb anything in the area where the assault occurred.

Get medical help
·         Physical Exam: Following an assault, it is important to have a physical exam to test for sexually transmitted infections, internal and external injuries and pregnancy.  With your permission, evidence can also be collected during a medical exam.
·         Hospital Support Services: The Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Program at Albany Memorial Hospital and Samaritan Hospital provide these support services free of charge to you.  A SANE nurse has specific training and experience in supporting survivors of sexual violence and in evidence collection.
·         Siena Support Services: Siena staff can assist you and accompany you to the hospital for a SANE visit. You may also have a friend accompany you.
·         County Advocate: Once you arrive at Albany Memorial Hospital, staff there will also contact an advocate from the Albany County Crime Victim & Sexual Violence Center who will meet you at the hospital to assist you through the process and provide support. You may accept or refuse the advocate’s presence. 
·         Rape Drug: If you suspect that you may have been given a rape drug, please let the SANE nurse know.  The SANE nurse can test for a DFSA (Drug Facilitated Sexual Assault.)
·         Confidential and Free Services: All tests provided during a SANE visit are confidential and will not cost you anything or be billed to your insurance.  You may refuse any of the tests.
  • Allowed 30 days after collecting evidence to decide: Having evidence gathered at the hospital does not commit you to pursuing a criminal complaint. In New York State, if you have a rape kit done it can be held up to 30 days at the hospital while you decide what you want to do. It will not leave the hospital unless you file a report.
Description of the assault and the assailant: Write down as much as you can remember about the circumstances of the assault, including a description of the assailant.
 
 
We can help.  Consider meeting with a Siena College administrator like the Dean of Students  or Title IX Coordinator at Siena College to obtain information about the many support services available to you on campus. The person will be able to answer your questions and can also walk you through the process of filing a report on and off campus, should you decided to pursue either or both courses of action.  Learn more about how to report and what you can expect when you report.
 

If an extended period of time has passed…
 
Consider meeting with a Siena College administrator like the Dean of Students  or Title IX Coordinator at Siena College to obtain information about the many support services available to you on campus. The person will be able to answer your questions and can also walk you through the process of filing a report on and off campus, should you decided to pursue either or both courses of action.
 
You are always welcome to call the Albany County District Attorney’s office to speak with a victim specialist or an Assistant District Attorney (ADA) from the Special Victims Unit regarding the criminal justice process and any concerns you may have about moving forward with a criminal complaint before moving forward on a complaint. You are not obligated to pursue criminal action after meeting with the ADA. Please note: Assault (physical and/or sexual) is a violation of Siena College policies and the state criminal code. Violators could face disciplinary action under either or both judicial systems.