S.O.S. News

April Events!

At UD, sexual assault prevention programs are now offered year-round, but nationally, April is recognized as Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Check out all the UD SAPE events in April, from the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes March, to S.O.S.' new "Changing the Conversation: Story of a Night" program, to SAGE's annual Take Back the Night March & Speak-Out! Come for CAP points, to learn how to help a friend, to advocate for change, to get a free t-shirt, or to Speak Out! And every day, help make UD safer by recognizing dangerous situations, supporting each other, and intervening in a safe way.


Medical Options:

There are a variety of medical concerns you may have:

  • INJURY: Within 72 hours of the sexual assault, you may have a medical need to be seen by a doctor to treat assault-related injuries. If the assault was more physically violent in nature, there may be internal tearing treatable by a doctor.
  • SEXUALLY-TRANSMITTED DISEASES: It is possible to contract a sexually transmitted disease during a sexual assault. It is recommended that you seek examination, testing, and preventative medicine for STDs if you have been assaulted. It is important that you be seen by a doctor as soon as possible, but if you do not get treated immediately, it is still worthwhile to seek treatment. There are nurse practitioners and/or gynecologists who can treat you at the Student Health Service (for U of D students), Planned Parenthood, or ChristianaCare Medical Center.
  • PREGNANCY: Pregnancy is another concern if you are female. You may receive pregnancy testing via any of the health agencies listed above. Christiana Care Medical Center, Planned Parenthood, and UD's Student Health Service -- Women's Health Clinic. You may also wish to obtain emergency contraceptive to prevent pregnancy. EC is available over the counter at local pharmacies, or can be purchased at a lower fee at the Student Health Service's Dispensary. If you use emergency contraceptive, it is most effective if taken within 72 hours after the assault, but it can be used in the first 5 days after unprotected sex or sexual assault. Additional information is available about EC from the Kaiser Foundation's August 2010 Update.
  • EVIDENCE COLLECTION: The ChristianaCare Medical Center has a staff of forensic nurses who can perform an official evidence collection exam (sometimes referred to as a "rape kit") to use in conjunction with legal proceedings against the assailant (see Legal Options). Forensic nurses, formerly known as Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (S.A.N.E.), are on staff 24 hours/day and there is a separate examination room from the rest of the ER. If you go to the emergency room, let the triage desk know that you have been assaulted and would like to be seen by the SANE/forensic nurse. This will put you on a faster track to be seen, examined, and released (as is possible based on how busy the ER is that day and how many traumas they must treat.) If you are unsure whether or not you wish to press charges, Christiana ER has the ability to store the evidence collected for up to 14 days to allow victims more time to decide whether or not they want to make a police report and have a criminal investigation conducted. It is critical to collect evidence as soon as possible after the sexual assault. Evidence collection is most successful within the first 24 hours after the assault, and it is recommended that you do not shower prior to examination, as showering will cause evidence to be lost. Within the first 72 is considered the best window of time. The Forensic Nurses encourage victims to be examined even when more time has passed since the assault, as some evidence may still be obtained.
  • TRANSPORTATION: University of Delaware Police, 302-831-2222, will provide transport to the Student Health Service or to the Christiana Hospital for University students, whether the assault happened on campus or in Newark. An unmarked car can be requested for the transport. You do not need to disclose why you need transport (beyond "medical care") to the hospital in order to utilize this service.
  • POLICE REPORTING: The University Police will not file a report if the survivor does not wish to provide information or press legal charges. An alternative they offer is to take a report for informational purposes without pressing charges. This option is helpful if the survivor needs time to decide what she wants to do, yet allow the information to be collected while it is fresh in the victim's mind. In any case, the officer will try to help the survivor get to the resources necessary for medical and emotional assistance. It is a common misperception that University police will press charges against the victim for underage drinking if the victim was intoxicated at the time of the assault. S.O.S. has been assured by University Police that they will not prosecute victims for underage drinking, and are more concerned about addressing the more severe felony crime of sexual assault.
  • TESTING FOR DATE RAPE DRUGS: Christiana Care Medical Center can send samples for testing to see if date rape drugs, such as GHB, Rohypnol, & Ketamine, are present in the victim's body. This option is only available to you in the first hours after an assault because the evidence leaves your system at first urination. If you suspect you have been drugged, you may collect the first urine after waking up in a clean, dry container. You can refrigerate or freeze your sample and bring it to the hospital with you. Urine kept in this way can be tested for Rohypnol days and even weeks after collection. For more information, visit SOS' info about Date Rape Drugs.
  • To reach the SOS Victim Advocate on duty (24 hrs/day) call 302-831-2226. The person who answers will take a first name and phone number and the advocate will call you back within 10 minutes.

    Upcoming Events!

    Wed, April 9th, 8:00pm
    Delaware's Annual Crime Victims' Tribute & Candlelight Vigil
    Delaware State University, Multi-Purpose Rooms, MLK Student Center, Dover
    Speaker: UD Alumni and Survivor, Kristen Baumer, was abducted as a freshman at UD. She will speak about her experience. She is part of the RAPE Outreach Team and has shared her story on The Biography Network's "I Survived" and the I.D. Network's "House of Horrors: Kidnapped." Kristen hopes that she can make a difference in others' lives by sharing her story. Those affected by crime are invited to bring writings, artwork or other meaningful items to be posted on the Memorial Walls which will be on display at the event. See the flyer. Sponsored by Delaware Victims' Rights Task Force. Calll 1-800-Victim1 if you need accommodations or information. See the flyer. Free and open to the public.
    Fri, April 11th, 6:00pm-7:30pm
    Art Party with Opt4
    Central Green in front of Gore
    Come out for Tie-dyeing, decorating Opt4 shirts, finger paint, puffy paint, glitter glue, bubbles, and mocktails. Sponsored by Opt4.
    Mon, April 14th, 8:00pm
    QUIZZO: Fundraiser for Natasha's Justice Project
    Trabant Multi-Purpose Rooms
    SAGE is hosting Quizzo to raise money for Natasha’s Justice Project. The organization was created by Natasha Alexenko, a sexual assault survivor, who has made it her life’s work to advocate for the elimination of the rape kit backlog in the United States. Natasha’s story is featured in the HBO Documentary Sex Crimes Unit, which was shown as part of the Women & Gender Studies Department's Film Series in March. Sponsored by Students Acting for Gender Equity (SAGE).
    Tues, April 15th, 7:00pm
    Changing the Conversation: The Story of a Night
    205 Kirkbride
    It's time to change the conversation around sexual assault. In this program, you will hear Jane's story and be part of transforming societal responses. Learn how you, and all of us, can make a difference in Jane's life and in the lives of other survivors. Start changing the conversation right now! Presented by S.O.S. and sponsored by UD's Sexual Assault Prevention & Education Committee.
    Tues, April 22nd, Speaker at 5:30 (men only), March will follow
    Walk a Mile in Her Shoes
    Speaker & Shoes at Trabant Theater
    Be on the lookout for your favorite fraternity brothers, male professors and staff as they don four-inch bright red stiletto heels to march around the north green. This will be a fun opportunity for men to educate and inspire the campus community to take action in the prevention of sexual violence, and learn about resources for victims on campus like Sexual Offense Support (S.O.S.). A limited number of men-sized high heel shoes will be provided, so come early to reserve your pair of shoes for this popular march (or feel free to bring your own high heels!). As the saying goes, you cannot truly understand another person's experiences until you have "walked a mile in their shoes." For more information about the national campaign, visit www.walkamileinhershoes.org. Sponsored by Inter-Fraternity Council as part of UD's Sexual Assault Awareness Month.
    Wed, April 23rd, 8:00pm
    Where Do You Stand? - Human Continuum Exercise
    Redding Lounge
    This program will help you clarify where you stand regarding a variety of sexual situations and whether they rise to the level of sexual harassment, sexual assault, or sexual abuse. Presented by S.O.S. for Sexual Assault Awareness Month and sponsored by UD's Sexual Assault Prevention & Education Committee.
    Thurs, April 24th & Fri, April 25th
    Powerful Partnerships Conference: 20 Years of the Violence Against Women Act and the Path Ahead
    Clayton Hall
    The Department of Women and Gender Studies at the University of Delaware and the Delaware Coalition Against Domestic Violence are co-hosting this conference which will highlight the power of partnerships in working to end gender violence. The conference will create a unique space for survivors, community activists, advocates, researchers, business leaders, and government officials from across the nation to come together to share findings, best practices, and lessons learned and to foster trust, resilient relationships, and innovate strategies for addressing gender-based violence as we look forward to the future. A variety of workshops, roundtables, panel presentations, and poster sessions integrating research and practice will be offered. Learn more & register today!
    Thurs, April 24th, 5:30pm
    Take Back the Night March & Speak-Out
    120 Smith Hall (for the speaker, where the march begins, and for Speak-Out after the march)
    Guest Speaker Andrea Gibson will kick off this year's Take Back the Night March! Women all over the world have been shattering the silence around sexual assault and violence against women at Take Back the Night Marches for over 30 years. Join your fellow students at the University of Delaware as we "take back the night" and speak out against campus rape and violence. All are welcome to participate! Sponsored by Students Acting for Gender Equality (SAGE). Check back for details. Sexual Assault Prevention & Education Committee.