Victim Resource Center of the Finger Lakes Inc.
Sexual abuse is not about sex, it is about
Power and Control. Sexual assault and abuse is any
type of sexual activity that you do not agree to, including:
anal, or oral penetration
intercourse that you say no to
Sexual abuse is NOT YOUR
FAULT! Sexual assault can be verbal, visual, or anything that
forces a person to join in unwanted sexual contact or attention. Examples of
this are voyeurism (when someone watches private sexual acts), exhibitionism
(when someone exposes him/herself in public), incest (sexual contact between
family members), and sexual harassment. It can happen in different situations,
by a stranger in an isolated place, on a date, or in the home by someone you know.
Rape is a common form of sexual assault. It is committed in many situations —
on a date, by a friend or an acquaintance, or when you think you are
alone. See "Sexting" under
BULLYING (at this website).
Always remember that ALCOHOL is still the #1 date rape drug. You
are 20x's as likely to be sexually assaulted if you are drinking
alcohol. Alcohol is involved in over 50% of all sexual
assaults. While males are drinking they are more
likely to misinterpret a female's behavior such as smiling,
laughter, and attire, etc., as permission for sex. Alcohol
slows reflexes and can impair a victim's ability to recognize a potentially
dangerous situation. Alcohol impairs judgment and lowers inhibitions
and your ability to make safe decisions.
Other drugs (date-rape drugs) along with over-the-counter medicines such as
Benadryl may be used (drug-facilitated sexual
assault). Some victims are incapacitated and have no memory of the
events, while others may have only a few drinks and feel intoxicated.
If you suspect that a drug-facilitated sexual assault could have taken place,
contact a trusted friend or family member and request they
immediately drive you to the emergency room at your local
hospital. Inform the hospital that you may have been sexually
assaulted and that date-rape drugs may be involved.
There are many drugs perpetrators can use, and most hospitals cannot screen for
all these drugs, but it is important to go to the hospital for your safety and
Coercion is arguing, pleading, intimidating, threatening or pressuring someone
into sexual activity; and this coercion can be emotionally painful and
Harassment is any unwanted sexual conduct. It happens when sexual
conduct is suggested as a term, condition or privilege of employment or
academic standing, or creates a hostile environment by interfering with an
individual's ability to work, learn or otherwise participate in services,
benefits, or activities. This can include sexual comments, jokes; sexually
suggestive comments or references to sex or gender-specific traits; notes,
email, graffiti, or telephone calls or text messages that are sexual in nature;
persistent unwanted sexual attention; leering, whistling, or other sexually
suggestive or insulting sounds or gestures; displayed pictures, calendars,
cartoons or other material with sexual content; and/or coerced sexual
activity. It is a form of illegal sex discrimination under federal,
state and local laws. Determinations of what constitutes sexual
harassment are evaluated case by case.
§ 130.05 Sex offenses; lack of consent.
(New York State)
1. Whether or not specifically stated, it is an element of every offense
defined in this article that the sexual act was committed without consent of
2. Lack of consent results from:
(a) Forcible compulsion; or
(b) Incapacity to consent; or
(c) Where the offense charged is sexual abuse or forcible touching, any
circumstances, in addition to forcible compulsion or incapacity to consent, in
which the victim does not expressly or impliedly acquiesce in the actor's
(d) Where the offense charged is rape in the third degree as defined in
subdivision three of section 130.25, or criminal sexual act in the third degree
as defined in subdivision three of section 130.40, in addition to forcible
compulsion, circumstances under which, at the time of the act of intercourse,
oral sexual conduct or anal sexual conduct, the victim clearly expressed that
he or she did not consent to engage in such act, and a reasonable person in the
actor's situation would have understood such person's words and acts as an
expression of lack of consent to such act under all the circumstances.
3. A person is deemed incapable of consent when he or she
(a) less than seventeen years old; or
(b) mentally disabled; or
(c) mentally incapacitated; or
(d) physically helpless; along
with additional categories.
Statute of Limitations on
Sex Crimes (S.8441 Skelos / A.12012 Paulin)
(New York State)
Eliminates the statute of limitations on first degree
rape, first degree criminal sexual act, first degree
aggravated sexual abuse and first degree course of sexual
conduct against a child. Extends from one to
five years the time allowed for a victim of these
crimes to begin a civil action.
This law does not cover crimes before June 23, 2006.
SIGNED: Chapter 3
EFFECTIVE: June 23, 2006
|How can I protect myself from a
There are things you can do to reduce your chances
of being sexually assaulted. Follow these tips from the National
Crime Prevention Council.
- Be aware of
your surroundings – who is out there and what is going on, and walk with
- Don’t let
drugs or alcohol cloud your judgment. Alcohol is still the #1 date rape drug.
- Be assertive
and trust your instincts. Don’t let anyone violate your space, and leave if you
- Lock your
door, windows, & your car as soon as you are in the vehicle, and don’t
prop open doors.
- Watch your
keys. Don’t lend, leave, or lose them & don’t put your name/address on
your key chain.
- Watch out for
unwanted visitors. Know who is on the other side of the door.
- Be wary of
isolated spots, like underground garages, apartment laundry rooms, etc.
- Avoid walking
or jogging alone. Vary your route and stay in well-traveled, well-lit areas.
hitchhike or pick up a hitchhiker, and never get into a car with someone you do
not know well.
- Keep your car
in good shape with plenty of gas in your tank, and if you have car trouble, use
your cell phone, or if you do not have a cell phone, put the hood up, lock your
car, and put a banner in your car, “Help, Call Police.”
See Resources on this website
for information under "Additional Links and Telephone Numbers" for
information on qualifying for free cell phone and service, and/or income
eligible lower cost phone service.
- 85% of adults know their attacker, 90% of
children know their attacker.
If you are sexually assaulted,
go to the hospital emergency room immediately, or to your family physician. Do
not shower, bathe, douche, wash your hands, brush your teeth, or use the
toilet. Don't change or destroy clothing, or straighten up. If you do, you may
destroy important evidence. This ensures the best possible evidence collection.
If you have already showered, etc., there may still be evidence, and the
hospital can treat you for any injuries and provide help for possible sexually
transmitted diseases. Newark Wayne Community Hospital, Newark, NY, has
a SANE program (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner), you can call at (315) 332-2022.
This program is a service provided to victims of sexual assault by specially
trained registered nurses. SANE exams include a pelvic and rectal exam, DNA
collection, photographs, blood sample, urine samples, and retaining your
clothing if this was clothing you were wearing during the assault.
You will be given medication to prevent the onset of sexually transmitted
diseases and medication to reduce the risk of HIV infection. If, at
any time during the exam, you wish not to proceed, notify the nurse
examiner. During the SANE exam immediate health risks are assessed,
and the SANE Nurse and/or physician will discuss ongoing care. The nurse
examiner will contact you after your exam to meet with you and discuss the
If you decide to contact the police, evidence is collected during the exam and
provided to the police, or if the police have not been
called, the evidence collected is kept in a locked refrigerator for 30
days. If at any time during this 30 day period you decide to call the
police, this evidence will be turned over to the police. After 30
days, if you decide not to call the police, the evidence
is discarded. If the police have been contacted, the
investigation may proceed with or without your consent.
You have the right to have someone with you during the exam, and you will be
asked if you would like a victim advocate to be with you also. If you
do not want the victim advocate with you at this time, the SANE nurse should
provide you with the contact information for this agency. In Wayne
County, NY, the sexual assault victim advocacy agency is the Victim Resource
Center of the Finger Lakes, Inc.
You will not have to pay for the exam due to the fact that the Forensic
Repayment Act covers the cost of the exam including necessary medications and
HIV preventatives for three days. If you have the SANE exam and/or
have contacted the police, contact your sexual assault advocate regarding
completing a NYS Crime Victims application. See this website
Call the Victim Resource Center (VRC) at (315) 331-1171 for advocacy,
short-term counseling, criminal justice support (if the police were
contacted), and additional assistance. If you live outside of Wayne County, NY,
call your local hospital to inquire if they have a SANE or SAFE program or call
your local Rape Crisis Agency. For the Sexual
Assault/Rape Crisis agency in your county, call information.
For a list of the agencies in New York State, go to http://www.nyscasa.org/.
Polygraph Tests and Psychological
Stress Analysis Tests for Victims of Sexual
Assault: Currently under
New York State Criminal Procedure Law 160.45 Polygraph
Tests; prohibition against.
1. No district attorney, police officer or employee of any law enforcement
agency shall request or require any victim of a sexual assault crime to submit
to any polygraph test or psychological stress evaluator examination.
2. As used in this section, "victim of a sexual assault crime" means
any person alleged to have sustained an offense under article one hundred
thirty or section 255.25, 255.26, or 255.27 of the penal law.
In 2005, a new provision for VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) was that
jurisdictions would no longer be eligible for STOP funding if their policy or
practice is to ask or require adult, youth, or child victims of sexual assault
to submit to a polygraph examination or other truth telling devices as a
condition for proceeding with the investigation of the crime. In
addition, the refusal of a victim to submit to such an examination must not
prevent the investigation of the crime. Jurisdictions had until Jan.
5, 2009 to comply with this federal
If you are in immediate danger, call
911. If you are not in immediate danger, but in
crisis, call your local sexual assault agency for
assistance. The VRC covers Wayne County in Upstate NY for
domestic, sexual, stalking violence, and child abuse services; Wayne,
Seneca, Yates, and Ontario Counties, in Upstate New York, for domestic violence
shelter. We also cover 4 counties for migrant farmworker victims of
these crimes. Our hotline numbers are 1-866-343-8808 or 1-800-456-1172.
Our office number is 1-315-331-1171.