Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Are your services and programs free of charge?
A: Yes. All of our services and programs are free of charge. Though we are funded by the Government of Ontario, United Way – Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox & Addington, and Queen's University, we also rely on private donations. Visit Canada Helps to donate and help us keep our services and programs free of charge for the survivors in our community. Our charitable number is 119146959RR0001. Additionally a Health Card is not required to access services.
A: Yes. There are many myths surrounding sexualized violence that perpetuate the incorrect idea that it is not a problem. However, we know that more than half of Canadian women have experienced at least one incident of physical or sexual violence since the age of 16 and that 1 in 5 men also experience sexual violence. Every minute in Canada, a woman or child is being sexually assaulted; and that sexual assault by someone known to the survivor is more common than left-handedness, heart attacks, or alcoholism. Statistically around 6000 children will experience sexual violence in Kingston & Area.
Q: What is the difference between rape and sexual assault?
A: Sexual assault is any unwanted sexual act. It can include anything from unwanted sexual touching to rape and sexual exploitation. Many incorrectly think that the only kind of sexual assault is forced or coerced intercourse - or perhaps what you see on movies and in television.
Q: What is the age of consent?
A: The age of consent is 16 years old. This means that consent to any act of a sexual nature cannot be given by a person under the age of 16. There are some exceptions to this when both people are under the age of 16; however, those exceptions are not taken into consideration when the older person is in a position of trust such as a babysitter. However it is illegal for sexual photographs or videos to be taken of those under the age of 18.
Q: I'm unsure if I was sexually assaulted...
A: Only you have the right to decide whether you want to engage in any sexual activity. According to Canadian law, you must give voluntary agreement, through words or conduct, to any and each act of a sexual nature. This is what consent means. Consent cannot be given if you are physically forced, if you are emotionally, mentally, and/or economically coerced, if you changed your mind, if the perpetrator is in a position of trust, power, or authority over you, if you are under 16 years of age, if you are a blood relative of the perpetrator, or if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Your perpetrator can be anyone – a partner, a spouse, a friend, a family member, a co-worker, a boss, an acquaintance, a stranger. And anyone can be a victim of sexualized violence.
Q: I have recently been sexually assaulted. Where do I go for medical help?
A: You can receive medical care at a doctor’s office, a health clinic, or from the 24/7 Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence (SA/DV) Treatment Program. If you have recently been sexually assaulted (within 7 days if you are 16 years of age or older, and no time frame limitations if you are under 16 years of age), you can receive medical care from the SA/DV Treatment Program accessed through the Emergency Department at the Kingston General Hospital (76 Stuart Street). Go right to the ER and ask for the SA/DV nurse on call. If you want support before going or accompaniment to the hospital, call our 24 Hour Crisis and Support Line at 613-544-6424 or 1-877-544-6424. The nurses will escort you to a private room within the hospital away from the Emergency Department.
Q: Can I volunteer?
A: Before becoming a volunteer, you must meet certain requirements. We ask that you be 18 years of age or older and that you are supportive of the work we do. However, there are volunteer opportunities for those under 18 at many of our events through out the year.
Q: Can you come to speak at my school or workplace about sexualized violence?
A: Yes. We offer presentations, workshops, and other public speaking engagements on various topics concerning sexualized violence to schools, professional and community organizations, and special interest groups. Topics include, but are not limited, to the following: rape culture, sexting/sextortion, sexual assault, sexual harassment, child sexual abuse, healthy relationships, human rights, anti-oppression/anti-discrimination, eating disorders relating to trauma, the law and consent, how to be an advocate, date rape drugs, sexual orientation and identity, elder abuse, sexual abuse and disabilities, self harm, sexual abuse and ethnicity, and media awareness, and social media and sexual violence.
Q: Do you provide support in Lennox and Addington counties too?
A: Yes. We offer services throughout the KFL&A region. Currently we have a counsellor who goes to Napanee once a week.