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About the project


About us

We are a team of disabled and non-disabled researchers who are passionate about ending violence against D/deaf and disabled people. All of us have experience of working or doing research with D/deaf or disabled victim-survivors. We work for the University of Leeds, Liverpool Hope University, Stay Safe East (a user led service for disabled victim-survivors) and SignHealth (a user-led service for Deaf victim-survivors).

About the project

This research looks at the experiences of disabled survivors of rape and sexual violence. We would like to know about your experiences of trying to get support, or why you did not access support after rape or sexual violence. Did that support work for you? Did it meet your access needs? If you reported to the police or went to court, what happened? We also would like to hear your thoughts about what you would want from a support service.

The research is funded by the Ministry of Justice and will help shape support services for survivors in England and Wales.

Who can participate?

Disabled adult survivors (age 16+) of rape or sexual violence – women, men and non-binary people, in England and Wales.

We adopt the Definition of disability from the Equality Act 2010. Disabled victim-survivors are those who have a physical or mental impairment that has a substantial and long-term negative effect on their ability to do normal daily activities. This includes physical or sensory disabilities, learning disabilities, neurodiversity and long-term mental health conditions with onset prior to the sexual assault. We also include D/deaf victim-survivors in this study, as we are interested to hear about their experiences with accessing services and any barriers they may have encountered.

What will happen if I take part?

We want to talk to you in April 2022. We will speak to D/deaf and disabled victim-survivors in interviews and focus groups.

The research is confidential, we will not share your personal details with anyone. You will have the choice of being interviewed one-to-one or taking part in a small focus group. Most interviews will be on zoom but if you prefer, we will try to meet you face-to-face.  We will meet your access and communication needs.

To say thank you for giving up your time, we will compensate you with a £30 Amazon voucher.

Why now?

You might have heard about the End-to-End Rape Review or about the government’s Tackling violence against women and girls strategy.

Victim-survivors of rape are not always getting the support that they deserve. We don’t know enough about the needs of disabled victim-survivors. We need to know much more about disabled people’s experience of sexual support services to improve these and make sure that disabled rape victim-survivors’ needs are being met.

British Sign Language (BSL) version of this page