Sexual Violence Prevention Unit

Mission Statement

The Sexual Violence Prevention Program's (SVPP) mission is to improve societal response to sexual violence and promote primary prevention strategies that reduce the incidence of victimization from rape or sexual assault in New York State. SVPP approaches sexual violence from a public health perspective, with emphasis on primary prevention, including efforts to change social norms, behaviors, and practices, to cultivate a community climate free from violence.

What is sexual violence?

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention defines sexual violence as any sexual act committed against someone without that person's freely given consent. Sexual violence includes

  • Completed or attempted forced penetration of a victim.
  • Completed or attempted alcohol/drug-facilitated penetration of a victim.
  • Completed or attempted forced acts in which a victim is made to penetrate a perpetrator or someone else.
  • Completed or attempted alcohol/drug-facilitated acts in which a victim is made to penetrate a perpetrator or someone else.
  • Non-physically forced penetration which occurs after a person is pressured verbally or through intimidation or misuse of authority to consent or acquiesce.
  • Unwanted sexual contact.
  • Non-contact unwanted sexual experiences.

What is consent?

New York State defines affirmative consent as a knowing, voluntary, and mutual decision among all participants to engage in sexual activity. Consent can be given by words or actions, as long as those words or actions create clear permission regarding willingness to engage in the sexual activity. Silence or lack of resistance, in and of itself, does not demonstrate consent. The definition of consent does not vary based upon a participant's sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.

Sexual Violence Helplines

  • In an emergency, call 911.
  • 1-800-942-6906: New York State Domestic & Sexual Violence Hotline for confidential assistance.
  • 1-844-845-7269: Report sexual assault on a New York college campus to the New York State Police.
  • New York City: 1-800-621-HOPE (4673) or 311.

What to do after a rape or sexual assault?

  • Get to a safe place. If you are injured or in danger, call 911.
  • Seek medical treatment as soon as possible for all HIV post-exposure, sexually transmitted diseases, and pregnancy testing and treatment options at the nearest emergency department.
  • HIV post exposure prophylaxis (PEP) should be initiated as soon as possible after exposure, ideally within 2 hours. Decisions regarding initiation of PEP beyond 36 hours post exposure should be made on a case-by-case basis.
  • Upon arrival, the hospital will offer assistance from a local rape crisis advocate. The advocate will be able to answer any of your questions about a forensic exam, accompany you through the entire examination, and provide follow-up resources.
    • A forensic exam, also known as a "rape kit", is the collection of evidence in the emergency department after a sexual assault occurred or within 120 hours.
    • To preserve as much DNA as possible, do not shower, use the bathroom or wash your clothes prior to going to the emergency room.
    • If you are uncomfortable with any part of the exam, you do not have to consent.

For more information about what to do after an assault, please call the NYS Sexual Violence Hotline at 1-800-942-6906 to be connected to your local rape crisis center (available 24/7/365) or visit the National Sexual Violence Resource Center website at

The 'New York State Sexual Assault Victim Bill of Rights' must be provided to every presenting sexual offense victim before a medical facility commences a physical examination of a sexual offense victim, or a police agency, prosecutorial agency or other law enforcement agency commences an interview of a sexual offense victim. The health care professional conducting the exam, police agency, prosecutorial agency or other law enforcement agency shall inform the victim of the victim's rights by providing a copy of this sexual assault victim bill of rights and offering to explain such rights. Also available in the following languages: Arabic, Bengali, Haitian Creole, Italian, Korean, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Spanish, Yiddish.

New York State Approved Rape Crisis Programs

Rape crisis programs around the state provide care and support to victims of sexual violence. Every program offers the following services:

  • 24-hour crisis intervention services
  • Short-term counseling
  • Accompaniment and advocacy
  • Information and referral services
  • Development of a community support system
  • Community education, professional training and outreach.

Rape Crisis Programs by County

To find the nearest Rape Crisis and Sexual Violence Prevention Program, click on your county. You may also view the full list here.

New York State Map
Albany County Allegany County Broome County Cattaragus County Cayuga County Chautauqua County Chemung County Chenango County Clinton County Columbia County Cortland County Delaware County Dutchess County Erie County Essex County Franklin County Fulton County Genesee County Greene County Hamilton County - Rape Crisis and Sexual Violence Prevention Program Not Available Herkimer County Jefferson County Lewis County Livingston County Madison County Monroe County Montgomery County Nassau County Niagara County Oneida County Onondaga County Ontario County Orange County Orleans County Oswego County Otsego County Putnam County Rensselaer County Rockland County Saratoga County Schenectady County Schoharie County Schuyler County Seneca County St. Lawrence County Steuben County Suffolk County Sullivan County Tioga County Tompkins County Ulster County Warren County Washington County Wayne County Westchester County Wyoming County Yates County Bronx County Kings County (Brooklyn) New York County (Manhattan) Queens County Richmond County (Staten Island) Richmond County (Staten Island) Bronx County New York County (Manhattan) Kings County (Brooklyn) Queens County

Training and Technical Assistance for Rape Crisis Programs

New York State Coalition Against Sexual Assault and The New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault provide training and technical assistance (TTA) to rape crisis programs throughout New York State. The purpose is to build and enhance the capacity of community programs, to provide quality direct services to victims of sexual assault, and to develop and implement effective community awareness and educational activities.


New York State Resources

National Resources

New York State Department of Health Resources

Resources for Youth/Young Adults

Resources for United States Military Personnel

Resources for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Individuals

Department of Health SVPP Contact Information

New York State Department of Health, Division of Family Health
Bureau of Women, Infant, and Adolescent Health
Empire State Plaza - Corning Tower, Room 821
Albany, New York 12237
(518) 474-0535*

*Note:This shared mailbox is only monitored by Sexual Violence Prevention Program staff from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday and is intended for non-emergency purposes. If you are someone who has been sexually assaulted and you are seeking immediate assistance, please contact the New York State Hotline for Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence at 1-800-942-6906. If it is an emergency, contact 911.