** UPDATE: The closing date for taking part in the survey has now been extended to Tuesday 30th April**
Survivors of sexual violence are being encouraged to share their views of the support they received in order to help improve the experiences of others as part of an inquiry which aims to enhance services across Merseyside.
The Sexual Violence review has been commissioned by Jane Kenned, Merseyside’s Police and Commissioner, in partnership with NHS England to examine the extent and nature of sexual violence in the region, map the services which are available to support those who have been subjected to such crimes and ensure they are easy to access.
The review which is being carried out by Liverpool John Moores University’s (LJMU) Public Health Institute, is reaching out to survivors to hear about their journey following an incident, including how they were treated within the criminal justice system and the extent to which the support they were offered met their needs.
Anyone with personal experience of sexual misconduct, such as harassment, sexual exploitation and all forms of sexual violence are asked to take part in a survey HERE The survey is completely anonymous and confidential and will now be open until the end of April.
The inquiry, which was launched in November last year to mark International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, will include the views of partners from the region’s local authorities, voluntary and third sector agencies, practitioners and experts. It will also draw on a range of reports and qualitative data produced by Merseyside Police and partners, including charities RASA and RASASC, who deliver the Police Commissioner’s dedicated aftercare support service for survivors of rape and sexual assault as part of Victim Care Merseyside.
Jane said: “This survey is a crucial part of our inquiry and I would urge anyone, both men and women, who have experienced any form of sexual violence who feels strong enough to take part to please share their views and experiences with us.
“We want to hear about your journey, whether you reported it to the police or not, and the path you took to accessing support to see how that process is working and whether it is working effectively. We know there is room for improvement. At the moment, far too many people do not get the support they need and deserve.
“Sadly, sexual violence remains far too prevalent in our society. Through this review we hope to better understand the nature and extent of sexual violence in our region and establish a baseline from which we can monitor and assess the work we do in future years. It has the potential to help make a real difference in the lives of victims and survivors and I hope many people will take part in this survey. By doing so, you will be playing your part in helping to improve the experience of other victims of sexual violence in the future.”
LJMU’s Public Health Institute (PHI) specialises in applied research and educational programmes addressing health issues at all levels from policy development to service delivery. Ellie McCoy, Researcher at PHI explains “We are committed to ensuring that our research makes a difference. Working together with the Police Commissioner for Merseyside and wider partners on this project will ensure that our research improves the outcomes for victims of sexual violence in the future”.
LJMU were selected as the research organisation following a competitive tendering process and assessment panel.