LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) is the nation's largest anti-sexual violence organization.
Every 68 seconds someone in America is sexually assaulted, according to RAINN.
The effects of sexual violence aren’t always easy to deal with, but with the right help, they can be managed.
If you need to talk to someone, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). You can also visit RAINN's website, which offers free, confidential support available 24/7 in English and in Spanish.
Below is a list of local programs that offer support for sexual assault survivors in Kentucky and Indiana.
The Kentucky Association of Sexual Assault Programs can connect you with local programs that offer free services, including a 24/7 phone line, accompaniment to the hospital and/or legal meetings/court.
The organization also offers therapy, counseling, support groups and more.
For an interactive map of programs in Kentucky with listed emergency departments, click here.
The Indiana Coalition to End Sexual Assault and Human Trafficking (ICESAHT) supports survivors and strengthens communities to prevent sexual assault and human trafficking.
ICESAHT connects victims with resources available in Indiana, outlining the steps survivors need to take to ensure their safety.
To find a list of Rape Crisis Centers in Indiana, click here.
What is Sexual Assault?
States have various definitions and penalties for different types of sexual assault.
To see how your state defines sexual assault and the punishments that come with them, visit RAINN's website by clicking here.
As a sexual assault survivor in Kentucky you have these rights:
- The right to receive support services at any time following a sexual assault or abuse
- The right to seek medical care at any time.
- The right to request a sexual assault medical-forensic exam at any emergency department in Kentucky. Collection of any potential forensic evidence, such as DNA, can be collected up to 96 hours post-assault/abuse. The forensic exam portion is free of charge. Medical care can occur at any time.
- The right to seek medical and forensic care without reporting to police. Very few exceptions exist in Kentucky law that allows a hospital to contact police without your permission. The most common exception is child abuse.
- The right to approve, decline, or change your mind about which parts of the exam you are comfortable with doing.
- Hospitals must contact the local sexual assault support program so that an advocate can be with you and help you understand your options as well as provide support.
- The right to a support person to be with you, including an advocate.
- If you do not wish to report to the police, your forensic exam kit/documentation must be stored by the hospital (or a contracting entity) for at least one year.
- If you choose to report to police, the hospital must notify them within 24 hours.
- If you choose to report to police and provide them with your forensic exam kit, then the kit will be tested for DNA.
- The police must send your forensic exam kit to the state lab within 30 days.
- If you choose to engage with the criminal system, then you have certain rights under "Marsy's Law" such as a right to notification of proceedings, a right to be heard, a right to be informed of your rights, and more. Your detective and prosecutor should review these rights with you.