Reporting sexual gender based violence

If you or anyone around you have been exposed to sexual gender based violence it is crucial that reporting is done. Many times victims/survivors do not report it might be because of family, social stigma, or hostile reception at the police station.

Step by step what to do when helping a victim/survivor in reporting sexual gender based violence :

  1. Get the survivor medical attention. Bring her to a hospital, clinic or local doctor/health officer as soon as possible. When getting medical attention the doctor shall: obtain medical history, examine the survivor, take both medical and forensic specimens at the same time, record the findings in the PRC Form, re-ensure the survivor that he/she is now in a safe place, explain the steps of the procedures the doctor is supposed to undertake, obtain a written consent from the victim/survivor.
  1. In cases of sexual abuse, demand that a Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) test be administered at the hospital within 72 hours. This is essential to safeguard the survivor from diseases (including HIV/AIDS) and can provide critical information for a medical report that can be used to prosecute the perpetrator. Be sure to get a copy of the PEP test results.
  2. Take the survivor to the police station and file a report with as much detail as possible. Ask for a copy of the report. Sharing this report with other direct service providers, instead of having the survivor repeat her story, this can reduce the chances of re-traumatizing the survivor.
  3. Make sure the survivor has a safe place to stay. If he or she has been abused at home, do not send her back to her house. If you are unable to provide this, be creative, without breaching the girls’ confidentiality by discussing the details of her case, ask a trusted person within the sport programme if she can stay with them. Contact a women’s shelter or social service organization that hopefully your organization has set up a relationship with prior to the incident.
  4. Note; the evidence should be protected and safely kept. The evidences such as the clothes for the survivors should be kept in a brown paper, do not store it on a plastic polythane bag.

It is important to encourage victims/survivors to report for their own justice and safety. For example: A battered woman may have very few forms of redress available to her. Sometimes women only can choose between returning to her natal home or reporting the matter to established leaders of the community and hope that they would investigate. This example show how community involvement is crucial, because sometimes it is the only hope survivors/victims of SGBV have when accessing justice.

Here´s another step by step guide for what to do when you have been raped.

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By:

Paul Nandia

Research and Communication Department.

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