Bedfordshire Police is supporting “Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week” Image supplied by Bedfordshire Police

Week of action supports victims and survivors of sexual abuse and violence

Bedfordshire Police is supporting “Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week”. This UK national week is to raise awareness of sexual abuse and violence, and to provide an opportunity for organisations and individuals to engage in dialogue.

The message Bedfordshire Police is sharing during this week of action is ‘it’s not OK’. All forms of sexual abuse or violence are unacceptable, and victims and survivors do not have to tolerate it.

This is an all-inclusive national campaign, underpinned by several leading charities working in the field. It will support anyone who has experienced sexual abuse or violence, regardless of their ethnicity, gender, identity, age, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or religion.

Victims will be signposted to organisations offering help and assistance tailored to their circumstances.

Detective Chief Inspector Jackie Dadd said:

“This is one of the worst crimes that can happen to an individual and one that can present challenges in terms of securing convictions.

“If you are a victim of sexual abuse or violence, however recent, or even if it happened long ago, we can help.

“We will fully investigate all reports made and, along with our partners, provide victims with appropriate specialist support.”

National social media campaign

The campaign is also backed by a major national social media campaign, which people can join on Facebook or Twitter. #itsnotok

For more information on Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week, visit the It’s not OK website.

Victims of rape and sexual assault can receive support and guidance from Bedfordshire Police and its partner agencies, including the Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC), as well as support through the criminal investigation process.

Reports can be made to police on 101, or via our online reporting tool.

You can also contact Bedfordshire’s Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) the Emerald Centre, by visiting www.emeraldcentre.org, emailing info@emeraldcentre.org or calling 01234 897052.

Always call 999 in an emergency.