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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 70291 Find in a Library
Title: Services to Sexual Assault Victims in Hennepin County (MN)
Journal: Evaluation and Change  Dated:Special Issue (1980)  Pages:131-134
Author(s): L Ledray; M J Chaignot
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 4
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This successful treatment model for rape victims, implemented by the Sexual Assault Resources Service (SARS) program in Hennepin County, Minn., keeps the power and control in the hands of the woman, not the counselor.
Abstract: During the 2-year research period, the SARS nurses helped rape victims 16 years and older who came into the Hennepin County Medical Center Emergency Room within 36 hours after the rape. Nurses assisted victims during the evidentiary examination, and then, for 12 months, they provided services which included supportive counseling for the victim and the significant others, and a goal-setting treatment approach. Both treatment approaches considered it important for the counselor not to try solving the victim's problems for her, but rather to provide information and remove obstacles that she could move at her own pace, and be the center of activity and decisionmaking. Thus, the seven essential components of the supportive counseling included responding to the victim as a normal, healthy individual who was in a state of disequilibrium due to a serious life crisis. The Guide to Goals was used in the goal setting treatment by the victim to set her own goals. The results included lower levels of depression and perceived stress, and more rapid behavioral changes in the desired directions for women who used the Guide to Goals alone or in combination with supportive counseling. However, the supportive counseling in the emergency room influenced the victims to return to the clinic and participate in followup at a significantly higher rate than those in the control group. In addition, better evidence was collected by the police, which resulted in higher conviction rates for rapists in the county. The future research at SARS will include a more specific analysis of Guide to Goals, and identification of the types of victims for whom it is most effective. Footnotes are provided.
Index Term(s): Psychological victimization effects; Rape; Victim medical assistance; Victimization; Victimology
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