If You Believe You Have Experienced Sexual Violence
Deciding to talk about and/or report an incident of sexual assault or relationship violence can be a difficult decision. Providence College provides a range of resources, services, and support for students and employees who believe they have experienced sexual violence.
What to Do After an Assault
Immediately After an Assault
Secure Safety Assistance
In some circumstances, students and employees may need safety-related assistance. The Office of Public Safety, Residence Life staff and/or local police can assist and are available 24/7.
- Providence Police (Emergency): 911 (9-911 from campus phone)
- Providence College Public Safety (Emergency): 401.865.2222
- Providence College Office of Residence Life (Hall Director On Call): 401.639.9110
Information about confidential resources/assistance for students and employees, including those available 24/7, can be found on the “Find Someone To Talk To” page.
Seek Medical Attention
Medical attention is critical so that any injuries (including internal injuries) or infections that may have resulted from the incident can be treated. Any hospital emergency room is able to care for the immediate needs of all victims of sexual assault, including women, men, and transgender individuals; however, whenever possible, victims are encouraged to go to a hospital with a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Program. SANE Programs have specially trained nurses who conduct examinations and collect evidence.
- In Rhode Island, Women & Infants Hospital (101 Dudley St., Providence RI 02905) and Hasbro Children’s Hospital (593 Eddy St, Providence RI 02903) have SANE Programs.
- Individuals do not have to provide health insurance information to the hospital and the hospital cannot refuse treatment. Individuals who do not want their insurance company to be billed should indicate to the hospital receptionist/clerk that they are “self-pay” and do not want to use insurance for the visit.
- Forensic evidence (aka “rape kit”) can be collected for up to 96 hours (4 days) after an assault.
- There is no charge for sexual assault evidence collection (aka “rape kit”) .
- Getting a medical exam does not mean that students have to press criminal charges; however, a medical exam will help to preserve evidence if students choose to press charges at some point.
- Students and employees are advised to preserve and record evidence, as follows: do not wash anything (body, hair, clothing), and do not comb hair, change clothes, douche or use the toilet; bring an extra set of clothing to the hospital (or bring the clothing worn at the time of the incident to the hospital in a paper bag); make notes to create a description of the assailant, where the assault occurred, and a description and direction of travel of any vehicle involved.
Contact Additional Resources
Providence College provides a range of resources, services, and support for victims of sexual violence.