Sexual Assault and Harrassment

Sexual assault is never the victim’s fault. If you or someone you know has experienced any type of unwanted sexual experience, we encourage you to get help. If you would like to press charges and you are over 18, the Metro Police Department has a Sexual Assault Unit and if you are under the age of 18 they have a Youth Investigations Branch that you will be connected to when you call 911.

Your Rights

Sexual Assault

  • Sexual assault victims have the right to have a sexual assault victim advocate present at any medical, evidentiary, or physical examination and interview with law enforcement, prosecutors, or defense attorneys. - Sexual Assault Victims’ Rights Amendment Act of 2013

  • Sexual assault victims have the right to information about their rape kits and all forensic examination kits shall be processed by the Metropolitan Police Department in a timely manner, at a maximum 90 days from the date the evidence was collected from a victim of alleged sexual assault.–

  • Sexual assault victims have the right not to be billed for a sexual assault forensic examination kit or for the kit itself. –Sexual Assault Victims’ Rights Amendment Act of 2013

  • You have the right to say “no” to any sexual act at any time if you do not want to do it.

Sexual Harassment

  • You have the right to report someone who is harassing you on public transportation or, does something to make you fear for your safety in any public space.

  • If you are under the age of 18 years old, you have the right to report a street harasser who solicits you for sexual activity or attempts to persuade you to go somewhere with him or her.

  • If a street harasser photographs or records you while you are using a restroom, undressed or engaging in sexual activity, you can report him/her.

  • If a street harasser exposes him or herself to you or flashes you, masturbates in front of you, or does any other sexual act in public, you can report him/ her.

  • If you think someone is following you, you can call 911 right away, the first time it happens. You do not have to wait for that person to commit a crime.

What is sexual assault?

For sexual activity to be all right, it must be consensual which means that both people want it to happen. Sexual assault is when any person forces you to participate in a sexual act when you don’t want to. 

Things you should know about sexual assault:

Sexual assault is never your fault. It doesn’t matter where you were, what you were doing or what you were wearing.

Sexual assault is not okay even if you know the person. Approximately 4 out of 5 of sexual assaults are committed by someone known to the victim. –RAINN

If you are assaulted and you choose to report the assault, the police will need to collect all of the evidence they can in order to charge your attacker. For this reason, they ask that you do not bathe, shower, change clothes, brush your teeth, eat, drink or use the bathroom until after a nurse has examined you. This can be very difficult to do but it is extremely helpful.

If you have been raped and you want the Emergency Contraception Pill (aka Morning After Pill), go to the emergency department of a hospital or call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). Open 24 hours, the hotline will connect you to EC providers near you. –Sex, etc.

To learn about what to expect after calling the police, please visit the Metro Police Department website

Here are more places where you can learn about sexual assault and harassment:

Stop Street Harassment

RAINN: Types of Sexual Assault

Here’s where you should go, if you would like to speak with someone or get help now:

  • DC Rape Crisis Center has a 24-hour crisis hotline (202-333-7273) if you need to speak with someone about your situation.
  • Call the National Sexual Assault Hotline, to speak with someone who is trained to help, at 800.656.HOPE(4673) or chat online.
  • Metro Police Department: If you are under 18 years old, you can call 911 and your case will be handled by the Youth Investigations Branch. Their number is 202-576-6788.
  • If you are 18 or over, you can call 911 and they will transfer you to the Sex Assault Unit or you can call 202-727-3700.

If you want to get involved in our fight against sexual assault and harassment:

Contact the Mayor and City Council

Contact the Department of Health

Contact the Police Department. 

Contact your Principal

Speak Your Mind- share a message with us about your education experience.

Join the movement, by becoming part of our staff, or by helping us.