Sexual Violence & Exploitation
Sexual violence includes rape, which is sexual intercourse without consent whether or not violence or force is used. Using drugs, threats, or any other pressure to force someone into intercourse is also rape. However, sexual violence also includes non-penetrative sexual activity without consent or against the victim's wishes. The victim may be male or female, adult or child.
Support and advice
We have a special group of people, the Unity Team, who are experienced in investigating sexual assaults in the most sensitive way.
They understand the incredible difficulty that victims often have in talking about what happened. We also have a specially trained Witness Care Unit to support people through their court appearance and keep them advised about progress in their case.
- If you have been the victim of rape or serious sexual assault, you should go as quickly as you can to somewhere you can be with a friend or relative, and will feel safe
- You don't have to report the assault. Only you can decide whether you want to. However, unless you're certain that you don't want to report it you should remember that the sooner you come along to our Referral Centre the better our chances of gathering good forensic evidence. If you want, you can bring a friend along for support. The centre can store the results until you decide what you want to do next
- If you do want to preserve as much evidence as possible, there are some things it's best not to do before visiting the Referral Centre. Try not to wash or brush your teeth, eat, drink or smoke, go to the toilet, wash any of the clothes you were wearing or clear up the room or the ground where the assault took place. Don't worry, though, if you've already done any of these things or feel you have to do them before you come in
- Whether or not you decide to go ahead with prosecution, you should get medical attention for any injuries. You may also need emergency contraception, and you should be checked for sexually transmitted infections
- You can call a Rape Crisis Centre for support. They can offer specialist counselling either by phone or in person
How to report sexual violence
If you have been sexually assaulted, you should dial 999 as soon as possible after the attack.
Safe Place Merseyside
SAFE Place Merseyside is the Sexual Assault Referral Centre for the Merseyside area
It is a joint venture supported by the Home Office, Merseyside Police, Liverpool CitySafe Partnership, Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust, Merseyside NHS Primary Care Trusts and Local Authorities.
SAFE Place offer a service for both males and females who have been sexually assaulted both recently and at any time in the past.
They have staff who are highly-trained healthcare professionals who can support you at their centre in Liverpool City Centre.
They operate a policy of strictest client confidentiality and are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year
For more information visit their website.