Sexual and Gender-Based Misconduct Information
IF YOU HAVE EXPERIENCED MISCONDUCT it is important to remember that you have many resources to support you. Here are options to help you meet your safety and emotional needs, obtain medical attention and pursue formal complaints at your home institution, the Tufts-Skidmore Spain program and/or legal action off-campus.
Sexual misconduct includes engaging in any of the following behaviors:
- Sexual harassment: any unwelcome sexual advance or request for sexual favors: flirtation, touching, advances, propositions, verbal abuse of a sexual nature, pressure to engage in sexual activity, graphic or suggestive comments about someone’s appearance, use of sexually degrading words, display of sexually suggestive objects or photos, sexual jokes, stereotypic comments based upon gender…
- Sexual assault: sexual act directed against another person without their consent or when that person is not capable of giving that consent.
- Sexual exploitation: non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another person: prostitution, non-consensual visual activity (videos, photos) and non-consensual distribution of videos or photos, exposing one’s genitals in non-consensial circumstances, pornography.
It’s hard to know what to do, how to feel, or what your options are after a sexual assault. Please know that you’re not alone. Below are some things to keep in mind. If you are in immediate danger or seriously injured, call 112.
- Your safety is important. Are you in a safe place? If you’re not feeling safe, consider reaching out to someone you trust for support. You don’t have to go through this alone.
- Although it may be difficult, do not shower, bathe, douche, or wash your clothes worn during the offense. If you have changed your clothes, place them in a paper bag. (plastic bags can destroy evidence).
- Seek medical attention as soon as possible. Even if you feel okay, you should still seek medical attention to ensure there are no hidden injuries and/or receive emergency contraception or STI treatment (if needed)
- What happened was not your fault. Something happened to you that you didn’t want to happen—and that’s not OK.
All emergencies in Spain: Call 112 (no area code needed).
The responder will speak a number of languages, and it is also possible to fax or SMS the emergency number in case of disabilities. You can also visit the Urgencias (emergency) department of any hospital. You can always reach 112, even on a cell phone without a Spanish SIM card.
The program’s emergency phone is 684 03 20 60.
Do not hesitate to call the program’s emergency phone: 684 03 20 60.
Other phone numbers you should always carry with you:
Susan Sánchez, program director: 690 625 612
Mayte de las Heras, assistant director: 680 140 966
Miguel Ángel Lera, student care coordinator: 622 867 457
If you have been a victim of a violent or sexual crime, you will need to file a criminal report (poner una denuncia) in person at the police station as opposed to via telephone or online.
You can report a crime at any police station (comisaría de policía). For a full list see click here.
THIS IS NOT A 112 OR EMERGENCY SERVICE
CONTACT THE POLICE (112) IF YOU NEED IMMEDIATE RESPONSE
THE PROGRAM’S EMERGENCY NUMBER IS 684 03 20 60
- Psychologist: Claire Jasinski (English speaking)
- Tel.: 636 545 052
- Psychologist: Laura Rojas-Marcos (English speaking)
- Tel.: 686 477 346
- Centro de Atención Integral a Mujeres Víctimas de Violencia Sexual (CIMASCAM) (This is a government institution in Madrid)
- Dirección: C/ Doctor Santero, 12 (Metro Cuatro Caminos)
- Tel.: 91 534 09 22 / 012 / 016
- Horario: De 10am a 8pm
- Support Service for Women Victims of Gender-based Violence (S.A.V.G.) (Government Institution)
- Ministerio de Igualdad: Por una sociedad libre de violencia de género (Government Institution)
- US Embassy in Madrid — American Citizen Services in Spain
- Dr. Rubén Borrás (English speaking general practitioner)
- Dirección: C/ Padilla, 20. Bajo Derecha (Metro Núñez de Balboa)
- Tel.: 674 216 899
- Monday through Friday 12 till 6:30pm
- Pathways to Safety (a resource for Americans abroad who have been victims of sexual abuse, rape or aggression)
- Instituto de la Mujer
- 91 392 56 86
- Emergency Services (112 emergency phone number)
- Tel.: 112
- Juzgados de Guardia e Instrucción (to press charges)
- Office for the Assistance and Protection of Women, Children and the Elderly (Local Police ((U.A.P.M.)).
- Dirección: Paseo de la Chopera, 2. Planta Baja.
- Tel.: 900 222 100 (24 hora 365 días al año)
- Hospitales Públicos Madrid (first aid rape victim; rape kit)
- ADESLAS (Program Private Insurance)
- APUNE (Association of North American Programs in Spain)
- Sinews (a multi-lingual counseling company offering support for victims)
- Asociación Asistencia Mujeres Violadas (a non-profit that provides psychological and legal support to rape victims)
Most survivors of sexual and relationship violence disclose the assault or abuse to at least one other person, usually a friend. Being there to listen, believe and support your friend in a positive way can greatly influence her/his healing process. The following suggestions/information can help you be a supportive friend.
Listen and Support
It’s tough to be prepared when a friend tells you that she/he’s been the victim of sexual or relationship abuse. Faced with that situation, the worst thing you can do is nothing. Remember, you can’t rescue your friends or solve their problems. You can only provide support.
- Support and understanding are essential. It takes a lot of courage for a survivor to share their experience;
- Try to provide a safe/non-judgmental environment, emotional comfort and support for the survivor to express feelings;
- Let her/him know that she/he can talk with you. Listen. Don’t rush to provide solutions.
Believe Your Friend
The most common reason people choose not to tell anyone about sexual abuse is the fear that the listener won’t believe them. People rarely lie or exaggerate about abuse; if someone tells you, it’s because she trusts you and needs someone to talk to.
- Sexual assault is NEVER the survivor’s fault. No one asks to be sexually assaulted by what they wear, say or do. Let the survivor know that only the perpetrator is to blame;
- The survivor needs to hear that fears, anxieties, guilt and anger are normal, understandable and acceptable emotions;
- Remember, no one ever deserves to be abused or harassed.
- Don’t press for details – let your friend decide how much to tell you. Ask she/he how you can help;
- Survivors have to struggle with complex decisions and feelings of powerlessness, trying to make decisions for them may only increase that sense of powerlessness.
- You can be supportive by helping your friend to identify all the available options and then help her/him by supporting their decision making process.
- The survivor can’t just “forget it” or just move on. Recovery is a long term process and each individual moves at his or her own pace.
- Encourage the survivor to seek medical attention, report the assault, and or contact the program’s staff.
- Don’t tell others what the survivor tells you.
- If you do need to share information for your friend’s safety, get permission by letting your friend know what you will share and with whom it will be shared.
- Don’t confront the perpetrator. Though you might want to fix the situation or get back at the abuser, this could make things worse, for you and your friend.
- An important part of helping the survivor is to identify ways in which the survivor can re-establish his or her sense of physical and emotional safety. You are a step in the process. Ask your friend what would make her/him feel safe and how you can help them accomplish this.
- If the stalking or harassment is ongoing, help your friend to develop a plan of what to do if he/she is in immediate danger. Having a specific plan and preparing in advance can be important if the violence escalates.
Things you can say
It is hard to know what to say to a friends when they confide in you. Refrain from asking a lot of questions, instead, support your friend with these phrases:
- It’s not your fault
- I’m sorry this happened
- I believe you
- How can I help you?
- I am glad you told me
- I’ll support your choices
- You’re not alone
What is street harassment?
Whistles, catcalls, winking, honks, shouted obscenities,leering, groping, curses, threats… street harassment is often accepted as normal male behavior, or even as a compliment,but it’s not!
– It dehumanizes women and reduces them to sexual parts.
– Even remarks that may sound complimentary serve to remind women of their inferior status to men and that they can be subject to evaluation and scrutiny.
– These actions make women feel threatened and unsafe. It creates an environment of sexual terrorism in which women fear male violence and rape.
You should know…
Women provoke men to make comments because of the way they dress.
Street harassment happens to all women, even in countries where women dress conservatively.
– You are not to blame. The harasser is the only responsible person
You have the right to…
– receive medical, psychological, social and legal help
– report to the police
How to respond:
– Be confident, calm and serious. Look at the harasser in the eyes and use strong body language.
– Another strategy could be to simply ignore the harasser. Whatever makes you feel safer!
– Do not apologize, swear or lose your temper.
– Things to say:
Something specific: “No me silbes, me estás acosando”
Identify the perpetrator: “Oye, señor con camisa roja, no me toques”
Attack the behavior, not the person: “Estás arrimándote demasiado a mí”
– If the harasser is in a car, write down his license plate or take out your cell phone to take a picture. Both will probably scare him into stopping.
What else is there to do?
– Download a security app such as the Police app (iOS) (Android), Companion (iOS) and bsafe (iOS, Android).
– Talk to the Tufts-Skidmore Spain staff!
– Ask your host family for the safe areas in your neighborhood.
– Ask female mentors where to go and where not to go.