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Wellbeing

Sexual Assault and Harassment Adviser Support

By QMAdvice 27 Sep 2022

Queen Mary takes any incident of sexual harassment and/or assault seriously and recognises the need for specialist, bespoke trauma-informed support to be available for survivors of any form of sexual violence and/or abuse.

Sexual violence is any incident of unwanted sexual contact. It includes rape, sexual assault, sexual abuse and sexual harassment. If you have experienced any form of sexual violence, whatever the circumstances, whenever it happened, it was not your fault.

Support is available both on and off campus and you can access either or both to suit you. The important thing to remember is that you are not alone and there is help and support available.

What is a Sexual Assault and Harassment Adviser (SAHA)?

The SAHA is a specialist adviser who provides emotional and practical support to anyone who has been raped, sexually assaulted, or harassed, whether that’s happened recently or in the past. The SAHA can support you whether this happened at University or not, and can also help you to access other available support services. Support is available for everyone and you don't need to report your experience to the University or the police to access support from SAHA.

The SAHA can support you to explore your options should you wish to report what has happened and can support you through this process if you do choose to go ahead – the decision to report is entirely up to you.

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Who is the service for?

The Service is free and available to any student who has experienced any form of sexual violence, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation.

If you are unsure about something that has happened and think it might be sexual assault or harassment, you are welcome to explore this with the SAHA. 

Will it be confidential?

The SAHA support is confidential, which means your situation will not be discussed with anyone outside the Service, unless we have your consent to do so. Exceptions to confidentiality apply only if there are legal or statutory obligations to disclose information (e.g. to the Police if there is an ongoing criminal justice investigation), or if there is a risk of serious harm to you or others.

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How can I arrange an appointment?

There are a few options;

  • Go via the Report and Support portal – https://reportandsupport.qmul.ac.uk/
  • Complete a referral to the Counselling service via mySIS
  • You can also ask your SSO/someone in your hall of residences to refer you  

You don’t need to give long answers; you can also write "I would prefer to talk about this in person", if it is difficult to write about or think about what happened. 

Alternatively, you can also contact the SAHA by email: a.floresreis@qmul.ac.uk.  

What can the SAHA help me with?

These are some of the things the SAHA can support you with:

Emotional support, including:

  • Supporting you to understand and manage the impact of sexual violence.
  • Working with you to develop positive coping strategies.
  • Helping you to re-build your self-esteem and trust in yourself and others.  

Practical support, including:

  • Providing you with impartial information and support around your options for reporting both within the University and externally.
  • Supporting you through any reporting process you choose to engage with.
  • Signposting and referring you to appropriate support services both within the University and externally.
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Talking about experiences of sexual assault and harassment can be very difficult and we understand that it may feel daunting to access the service. The SAHA has a lot of experience supporting survivors of sexual violence and/or abuse and will be able to provide a safe and sensitive space for you to discuss your thoughts and feelings.

If you don’t wish to speak to the SAHA or don’t feel you’re quite ready yet but would still like some advice and support, you can consult our list of resources here: https://reportandsupport.qmul.ac.uk/support/what-support-is-available-for-sexual-violence

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