Have you been assaulted by a dodgy punter on the beat in Stoke-on-Trent?

If you’ve been raped or assaulted, it’s completely up to you whether or not you choose to report it to the police and/or pass on the information to the National Ugly Mugs scheme*. No-one else can or should make that decision for you, but we would be happy to help you to do either of these things if you would value support.

Even if the incident occurred while you were soliciting, an offence has occurred if you didn’t give your consent to something that happened. Consent may be given to one thing but not another, for example, oral sex but not vaginal sex, or business with a condom but not without one. You can also change your mind by withdrawing consent after you’ve given it. The fact that a person has paid for sex, or attempted to pay for it, does not mean that you have given your consent.

If you’ve been sexually assaulted and you’re not sure yet whether you want to report to the police but think you might want to at some point, you can have a forensic medical examination carried out at the Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) in Cobridge, where forensic evidence can be stored for a future date. Their number is 0800 970 0372. (https://grangepark.org.uk)

You might also want to contact Savana who provide support for anyone in Stoke or North Staffordshire who has experienced sexual violence. As well as offering counselling sessions, Savana have Independent Sexual Violence Advisors (ISVAs) who can offer advice and support to people who have been raped or sexually abused. They will work with you to identify your needs and can give you information about legal processes. You can contact them on tel: 01782 433205 / 01782 433204

For more information about the National Ugly Mugs scheme, visit their website  They provide lots of services including alerts about ‘dodgy punters’ that you can receive by text or e-mail. The service is completely free – all you need to do is register on their website to receive them directly to your device or, if you prefer, to be able to scroll through the alerts on their site. If you want to raise an alert yourself, you can do this via NUM’s site once you’ve registered, or we can help you.

If you’re looking for help and support to exit prostitution in Stoke-on-Trent, we’re here for you. You can call us in confidence on 07393 916650, e-mail us at support@yasha.org.uk or visit our website and click on ‘I want support’ and ‘What we do’.  We totally understand that it can be scary to reach out, and you might want to just talk on the phone or e-mail us to start with. Just do what you feel comfortable with. We’re not here to put any pressure or judgment or expectation on you. We just want to be a safe place and offer safe relationships.

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