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A confidential counselor is available 24/7 to help you navigate your options.  

Overseas Urgent & Non-Urgent Help

DURING TRAVEL/POST-INCIDENT

If you've experienced sexual assault, relationship violence, and/or gender-based harassment or discrimination while traveling overseas, what happened is not your fault. You always deserve to be safe and respected. You may be experiencing a wide range of feelings, which are all valid. Regardless of what you decide, there are many people at Stanford University who are committed to helping students, faculty, and staff.  

Differences in laws, administrative processes, medical care, cultural and social norms, and attitudes vary around the world. 

EMERGENCY (Immediate threat to physical/mental health, safety, or security)

If this is an emergency and to ensure that you receive appropriate care and advice, please call the International SOS: +1-215-942-8478.   If you are the impacted party in a sexual assault or rape abroad, Stanford’s global travel safety partner, International SOS, can assist with:

  • Medical assistance including emergency treatment, antiviral drugs and emergency contraception
  • Provide assistance to ensure that you are physically safe and secure
  • Access to mental health counselors
  • Click here to learn more about International SOS

Connecting with the Stanford Operator will connect you with a staff member which is non-confidential. 

NON-EMERGENCY (No immediate threat to physical/mental health, safety, or security)

Stanford Travel Emergency Line (24/7/365,  +1-833-496-0303)
Available 24/7/365, the Stanford Travel Emergency Line can provide assistance, information and access to resources at Stanford. This line reaches Stanford staff who are not a confidential resource, and who will likely need to report  the incident to  the  SHARE Title IX Office at Stanford.  For information about a confidential resource, please see the “Confidential Support Team” information, below.

Stanford Confidential Support Team (+1-650-725-9955)
In addition to immediate medical and security assistance, you may also seek confidential assistance from Stanford’s Confidential Support Team. CST specializes in emotional support and guidance in the aftermath of sexual assault, relationship violence, and/or gender-based harassment or discrimination.  Click here to learn more about Stanford’s Confidential Support Team.

SELF-CARE

OTHER RESOURCES

 - In Washington, D.C. available 24/7 In the U.S./Canada: 888-407-4747

 - When Abroad: +1 202-501-4444

THINGS TO CONSIDER

Differences in laws, administrative and reporting processes, medical care, cultural and social norms, and attitudes vary around the world. You may - or may not - want medical or legal intervention, and your decision about the best next steps for you may rest on what the intervention looks like.  If you contact International SOS or an embassy/consulate to ask about conditions that may impact your decision, you may want to ask about:

Medical Care:

  • What clinic should I go to for medical care?
  • What should I expect when I seek medical care?
  • Are doctors and medical professionals required to report the incident to local authorities or to the police?
  • What can you tell me about cultural and social norms, and attitudes of medical professionals in cases of sexual violence or assault?
  • What can you tell me about privacy rules and norms, to ensure that I maintain privacy and anonymity to the extent I choose?  What steps do you recommend to minimize this unwanted visibility and exposure?

Forensics-Evidence Collection:

Will I be presented with choices and/or have control over what forensic or medical procedures are conducted?

  • Will I be allowed to refuse any aspects of forensics/evidence collection?  
  • Can I choose to stop the exam at any point if I feel uncomfortable or don't wish to proceed?

Reporting to Local Authorities:

  • What should I expect if I choose to report this incident to the police? What are the local attitudes? Is there the potential for revictimization or harassment?
  • What information/documentation should I take with me to make a report (such as passport, names/address/contact information, location of incident, witnesses, emergency contacts)?  What are the legal implications of reporting such incidents, for example,

- mandatory prosecution where I am required to testify

- a requirement that I remain in-country for the duration of the legal proceeding

  • What can you tell me about privacy rules and norms, to ensure that I maintain privacy and anonymity to the extent I choose?  What steps do you recommend to minimize this unwanted visibility and exposure?

Support:

  • Can you recommend someone to accompany me to my medical visit or visit  to the local authorities? 
  • Are there any local in-country NGOs or impacted party/victim-assistance organizations that can provide me assistance or support?
  • Can you help me source a local counselor who I can meet in person or virtually?
  • Do you have a referral for a local lawyer or advocate?

 

BEFORE TRAVEL

Plan Ahead:

  • Country guides, available through International SOS provide information for travelers on laws, local conditions, culture, societal norms and other factors that may impact safety and security during travel.

- Equaldex provides a crowd-sourced knowledge base of LGBTI rights by country and region.

- International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association (ILGA)’s annual world report + map on sexual orientation laws (under the “Resources” tab) provides useful, crowd-sourced information.

  • Your program’s orientation, if offered, is useful in offering you resources and tips pre- and during- travel.  Plan to attend, and don’t hesitate ask for anything specific you may need. 

Get Help:

Contact Stanford’s Global Risk office for assistance in advice and assistance pre-travel or during travel.  

  • Provides consultation, helps assess and mitigate risks, and jointly strategizes with travelers to enable safety and security while conducting international research, study, or experiential learning. 

- For example, check in with Global Risk to get familiar with the neighborhoods you may visit, and understand which areas to avoid.

  • Global Risk office can assist during overseas travel, helping mitigate risks and manage incidents.

Things to Consider Before Travel:*

  • Remain aware of your surroundings at all times.
  • Avoid wearing headphones or earbuds while walking and commuting, stay situationally-aware and free from distractions.
  • Maintain a low profile. An outward appearance of being an “outsider” may attract unwanted attention.
  • Stay in groups or pairs as much as possible.
  • Inform friends, co-workers, program staff, etc. where you are going and when you expect to return.
  • Never accept drinks or food from strangers.
  • Keep a list of resources and contacts handy.
  • Trust your instincts.

*BUT ALWAYS REMEMBER:  If you've experienced sexual assault, relationship violence, and/or gender-based harassment or discrimination while traveling overseas, what happened is not your fault. You always deserve to be safe and respected. You may be experiencing a wide range of feelings, which are all valid. We invite you to use this website to navigate and choose the resources you want to use. Regardless of what you decide, there are many people at Stanford University who are committed to helping students, faculty, and staff.