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sexual assault / rape

Mx of patients presenting to a Victorian ED alleging sexual assault

  • ED staff should follow their local procedures for Mx of these patients
  • patients with emergent injuries should be treated in ED according to need
  • patients with mild injuries or no injuries who choose to have a forensic examination, whilst awaiting arrival of FMO:
    • should not be undressed
    • if they need to pass urine:
      • if police are present they can be provided with a special kit for urination, otherwise, ED staff should advise the patient to wipe their genitals with a tissue prior to urinating and this tissue be placed in a paper bag with time and date and handed to police or counsellor on arrival.
  • the patient has the right to choose:
    • whether or not they wish to speak to a sexual assault counsellor / advocate - in which case the ED nurse in charge contacts the CASA team for that area, or after hours, the Sexual assault Crisis Line (SACL)
    • to receive medical treatment from ED medical or nursing staff, rather than proceeding to a forensic examination, however, they need to be aware that this will compromise the integrity of a subsequent forensic examination in the proceeding 72hrs.
  • forensic examinations can only be requested if the patient is prepared to disclose the sexual assault to police. Police are the only agency permitted to request attendance of forensic medical officers (FMO) from the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine (VIFM)

some definitions

  • sexual harassment
    • unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that any reasonable person would regard as undesirable or offensive
    • it is any unwelcome and sexual conduct that is offensive, threatening or intimidating from the view of the person being harassed, regardless of the intent of the offender
    • covers a wide range of unsolicited, unwelcome, non-reciprocated behaviours which can be physical, verbal or written and can include words, statements or visuals that are transmitted by paper, phone, fax, e-mail, office intranets or any other means of communication
    • it may include:
      • uninvited and unnecessary physical contact such as patting, touching or fondling through to molestation
      • unnecessary or deliberate physical intimacy such as brushing up against a person
      • offensive hand or body gestures
      • sex-based insults, taunts or teasing
      • sex-based jokes, comments or innuendo
      • unwelcome comments about a person’s sex life or physical appearance
      • sexual propositions or repeated invitations for dates
      • persistent questions or insinuations about a person’s private life
      • displays and/or distribution of sexually graphic material, in electronic or other formats such as photos, posters, calendars and magazine articles
      • suggestive behaviour such as staring or leering at a person or parts of their body
      • offensive email messages
      • offensive computer visual images and/or screen savers
      • sexual assault or rape
      • where a power relationship is involved and the person in receipt of the behaviour has reasonable grounds for believing that rejecting an advance, refusing a request or taking objection to the conduct would disadvantage them in relation to their employment or work.
    • workplace examples that would NOT generally constitute harassment include:
      • behaviour that is based on mutual, attraction, respect and friendship
      • interactions that are consensual, welcome and reciprocated
      • an expression of comfort or affection between colleagues
      • a one-off invitation to dinner, movies etc.
    • certain acts of sexual harassment may constitute a criminal offence
    • in Victoria, it is against the law when it occurs in an area of public life covered by the Victorian Equal Opportunity Act 2010
  • victimisation
    • subjecting, or threatening to subject, someone detrimentally because they have asserted their rights under equal opportunity law, made a complaint, helped someone else make a complaint, or refused to do something because it would be discrimination, sexual harassment or victimisation
  • vilification
    • behaviour that incites or encourages hatred of, serious contempt for, revulsion or severe ridicule of another person or group of people because of their faith, beliefs, religion, or race.
    • it is against the law to vilify a person or group of people because of their faith, beliefs, religion, or race.
sexual_assault.txt · Last modified: 2021/05/12 06:41 by gary1

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