Something happened to me
It is up to you to decide what you’d like to do next.
You can get in touch with a sexual assault centre in your community.
Sexual assault centres offer support, counselling and information. They can also tell you more about reporting options (if you are interested in learning about reporting). All calls are free and confidential.
You can talk to a trusted friend, family member, or other support person.
If you were recently sexually assaulted, you can get medical attention through a Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Treatment Centre in your community.
Services are confidential. It is your decision whether or not you wish to report to the police, or provide police with any forensic evidence collected. Contact the Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Treatment Centre in Ontario nearest you.
You can report what happened to the police. Not everyone wishes to formally report what happened to the police. If you don’t want to, that’s okay too.
You can learn more about other legal options: get up to four hours of free, legal advice from one or more lawyers by phone, or in person.
Something happened to me a long time ago. Can I still get help?
YES. You can still get help, even if it happened a long time ago.
- Many survivors of sexual assault wait a long time before they begin to talk about their experiences.
- Most people who contact a sexual assault centre are reaching out to talk about something that happened to them many days, months or years ago. You can still get in touch with a sexual assault centre in your community now, even if it has been many months or years since what happened. You can still report what happened to the police too.
Something happened to me, but I don’t want to report it. Can I still get help?
YES. You can still get help, even if you are not interested in formally reporting what happened.
- If you don’t wish to report, you are definitely not alone! Support is still available to you. Most people who contact a sexual assault centre get support – such as counselling or information on coping — but never formally report.
- Very few victims/survivors disclose to formal supports, such as the police or health care providers, at all. Canadian victimization surveys show that less than 10% of people who are sexually assaulted report what happened. Other forms of sexual violence, such as harassment, are thought to be significantly under-reported as well.
Something happened to my friend/child/family member/partner/someone else I know.
If you know someone who has been sexually assaulted, there are things you can do to support them.
- You can believe them
- You can listen to their story without judgment
- You can listen without telling them what to do
You can help them to find places that offer support and information in the community. For example:
- You can get in touch with a sexual assault centre in your community. Sexual assault centres offer support, counselling and information. All calls are free and confidential
- You can get in touch with the Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Treatment Centre in Ontario nearest you
- You can learn more about legal options here