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Support, Resources and Reporting

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RWU Residence Life, Public Safety and Counseling are available 24/7

  • Get to a safe place immediately.
  • Receive medical attention as soon as possible.

Prompt medical treatment for the victim is highly recommended in sexual assault cases. Medical personnel have been trained to perform exams in a manner which respects the emotional well-being of the victim as well as treating injuries and addressing concerns regarding sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy. In addition, a hospital examination ensures that valuable corroborative evidence is not lost.

All hospital emergency rooms have been provided with a Sexual Assault Evidence Collection Kit from the Department of Health. We urge women over the age of 18 to access Women and Infants Hospital, men over the age of 18 to utilize Rhode Island Hospital, and victims under the age of 18 to utilize Hasbro Children’s Hospital.

The best medical evidence can be collected up to 96 hours after the assault. This evidence kit may be used on both males and females. If the victim does not have medical insurance, facilities will provide the examination and collection at a reduced cost. The RI Department of Health will accept evidence in kits whether or not the victim has decided to file a police complaint. Victims who are unsure about making a report at the time of the incident may decide to come forward in the future, and the evidence will be necessary at that time.

Medical attention is important because:

  • A. Of the possibilities of physical injury or trauma
  • B. Of the need to collect evidence should the victim decide to press charges
  • C. Of the possibilities of pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases

If you decide to receive medical attention you should:

  • A. Not disturb your appearance
  • B. Not wash, bathe, douche, or change clothes
  • C. Take the clothes you were in when the incident occurred, if you have changed. The clothes may be held as evidence
  • D. Tell the emergency room staff that there has been a sexual assault, so that you will be attended to immediately

Local Medical Resources:

Seek Counseling and Emotional Services:

Sexual misconduct victims experience profound emotional trauma. Although victims react in different ways, common responses include: initial feelings of shock and disbelief; fears about personal safety; preoccupations with recurrent, intrusive thoughts about the assault; sleep disturbances; anxiety; impaired concentration; mood swings; depression; and feelings of anger, shame and self-blame.

Regardless of whether you report the assault you should always seek counseling and support to help with the emotional trauma associated with sexual misconduct.

Local Counseling Resources:

Students may access the Counseling Center staff after hours by contacting: Public Safety 401-254-3333, the On-call C.O.R.E., or an R.A.

In addition, Day One operates a 24-hour hotline. Advocates are trained to provide a variety of services (e.g., meeting you at Women and Infants Hospital, helping you file charges with the local police office, appearing in court, etc.).

Roger Williams University encourages victims of sexual misconduct to talk to somebody about what happened so they may receive the support they need. Many sexual misconduct cases go unreported because the victim fears retaliation or possible humiliation if word gets around. Victims tend to feel guilty, as though they did something to bring it upon themselves, and often keep the misconduct to themselves or share some of the incident with a close friend. Students who have been assaulted or discriminated against in any way have been victimized. Their assailants are at fault and the behavior is not acceptable. In order to stop this type of activity, we encourage victims to help start the healing process by reporting what has happened to them. Recognizing the different needs of the victims, there is a range of ways to report the perpetrator’s behavior.

It is important to note that there are university staff members who are obligated to report all details of a report of sexual misconduct (including the identities of both the victim and the perpetrator) to the Title IX Coordinator, Dr. Jen Stanley. A report by a victim to these employees (called responsible employees) constitutes a report to the university –and generally obligates the university to investigate the incident and take appropriate steps to address the situation as to protect the victim from further victimization.

Where to get help if you are Accused of Sexual Misconduct

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Being accused of sexual misconduct can be a frightening, confusing and isolating experience. You may want to seek emotional and other assistance to cope with the feelings and the conduct procedures associated with the charges. Two possible resources for you on campus include:

Reporting to “Responsible Employees”

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A responsible employee is a University employee who has the authority to address sexual misconduct, who has the duty to report incidents of sexual misconduct or other student misconduct, or who a student could reasonably believe has this authority or duty.

When a victim tells a responsible employee about an incident of sexual violence, the victim has the right to expect the University to take immediate and appropriate steps to investigate what happened and to resolve the matter promptly and equitably.

A responsible employee must report to the Title IX Coordinator or other Deputies, all relevant details about the alleged sexual misconduct shared by the victim and that the University will need to determine what happened – including the names of the victim and alleged perpetrator(s), any witnesses, and any other relevant facts, including the date, time and specific location of the alleged incident.

To the extent possible, information reported to a responsible employee will be shared only with people responsible for handling the University’s response to the report. A responsible employee should not share information with law enforcement without the victim’s consent or unless the victim has also reported the incident to law enforcement.

Students who report sexual misconduct will be offered support from a variety of services, including the Sexual Assault Advisor Support Program (SAASP) via the Title IX Coordinator, Dr.Jen Stanley.

Filing a report helps to:

  • Protect you and others from victimization
  • Apprehend the alleged assailant
  • Maintain future options regarding criminal prosecution
  • Alerts RWU of a possible predator

A student may pursue any or all of these options:

Confidentiality, Privacy and Reporting

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Any person who reports that they are a victim of Sexual Misconduct and or Relationship Violence/Gender Based Misconduct has the right to confidential support and advice on and off campus. The following list includes confidential resources on and off campus. If any person involved in the report of sexual misconduct desires confidential support on campus, they should speak with professional staff listed below.

RWU Confidential Resources

  • RWU Center for Counseling and Student Development:
    401-254-3124
  • RWU Health Services, Center for Student Development:
    401-254-3156
  • RWU Multifaith Chaplain, Rev. Nancy Soukup, Intercultural Center:
    401-254-3433 | nsoukup@rwu.edu

Off-Campus Confidential Resources

  • Day One (formerly RI Rape Crisis):
    401-421-4100
  • Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN) crisis hotline:
    800-656-HOPE
  • Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN) online hotline:
    https://ohl.rainn.org/online

Dating and domestic violence services (including criminal justice and protective order advocacy, emergency shelter, transitional housing, safety plans, counseling, education and/or policy) are available at the following member agencies of the RI Coalition Against Domestic Violence: