The Women's Center
West Chester University
Lawrence Center 220
West Chester, PA 19383
The Women's Center provides informal support, information and referrals for victims, friends, and family members. This assistance is available whether the assault was recent or in the past. Pamphlets, books and useful articles are also available.
Your Health and Safety
While it is not necessary for you to report the attack, we encourage you to at least go to the hospital and get a rape kit done within 72 hours of the attack. A rape kit, firstly, preserves the evidence of the attack if you wish to press charges, but more importantly, the rape kit will ensure your vaginal health and safety. You will also be able to receive prescriptions for Plan B and sexually transmitted infection medicines, including HIV prevention medicine. It is imperative that you do not bathe yourself or get rid of or wash the clothes you were wearing when you were attacked, for that can destroy vital evidence.
You do not have to do anything with the rape kit if you do not wish to do so. You do not have to press charges with the rape kit, and nothing will be done to begin the process of pressing charges without your consent.
Brandywine Hospital and Phoenixville Hospital are the only places in the area where one can receive a rape kit procedure by a certified Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner ("SANE") nurse. Brandywine Hospital is located on 201 Reeceville Road in Coatesville, Pennsylvania, and Phoenixville Hospital is located on 140 Nutt Road in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania. If you are without transportation, transportation can be provided for you. A Crime Victims' Advocate can be arranged to meet you and assist you with the procedure.
Reporting the Assault
You can find a copy of West Chester University's sexual assault policy here. We are currently in the process of revising the policy to reflect more current procedures and prevention efforts.
The Women's Center on campus can provide informal support for victims of sexual assault or rape. We are open from 9AM to 5PM Monday through Friday.
The Counseling Center on campus has numerous psychologists that can help you. Their psychologist appointments are free of charge; psychiatrist appointments cost $10.
The Crime Victims' Center of Chester County also provides 24-hour support for those who either:
You can find support centers in other counties here on RAINN's website.
The Crime Victims' Center provides a variety of victims services, including:
They have two 24 hour hotlines. The one for sexual assault/rape victims is: 610-692-RAPE (7273). All calls are answered by trained advocates.
The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR) works to raise awareness about rape and sexual assault. You can also find certified PCAR centers and information about Pennsylvania rape and sexual assault laws on this website.
The Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN) is the leading rape and sexual assault awareness organization. They have a 24-hour hotline that you can call: 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). Or, you can connect with their online hotline.