AN ORGANISATION supporting victims of rape and sexual abuse is reminding people they are still open to offer support during the pandemic.
During the first lockdown, The Glade Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) in Bransford, saw fewer people access their services for either forensic medical examination or emotional support.
While sexual violence outside of the home may have decreased as social venues are closed, some people will still be experiencing abuse at home, where the opportunities to report abuse or call the centre as a self-referral are severely diminished.
People who may have broken rules relating to Covid-19 may also be apprehensive about accessing support from the centre – but the centre’s manager stresses this should not stop people from speaking out about abuse.
Manager Hannah Taylor, said: “We want people to know they can still contact us confidentially to access support.
“Our team of examiners and crisis workers are still here to support those who need us without judgement – whether they report to the police or choose to self-refer.
“You will not get into trouble if guidelines have not been followed in relation to the pandemic and an assault has taken place. This should not stop you accessing support and the abuse is in no way your fault.”
The centre – which celebrated being open for eight years in November 2020 – has remained open throughout the pandemic, as have SARCs around the country.