Minimising trauma in staff at a sexual assault referral centre: what and who is needed?

Horvath, Miranda A. H. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4363-4575, Massey, Kristina, Essafi, Shanaz and Majeed-Ariss, Rabiya (2020) Minimising trauma in staff at a sexual assault referral centre: what and who is needed? Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine, 74 . p. 102029. ISSN 1752-928X (doi:10.1016/j.jflm.2020.102029)

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Abstract

Introduction: This study investigates staff’s perspectives on the characteristics required to work in a sexual assault referral centre and the support and training they believe sexual assault referral centres should provide to minimise the negative impacts of the work and provide a supportive working environment.

Methods: Semi- structured interviews were conducted with 12 staff, and a focus group was held with a further four staff of a sexual assault referral centre. The data were examined using thematic analysis.

Results: Findings indicated that to work in a in sexual assault referral centre staff need to be understanding, empathetic, non-judgemental, supportive, flexible and resilient as well as having coping skills. The support structures and processes staff reported as being essential to creating a supportive working environment and reducing vicarious trauma were: supervision; training; peer support and shadowing.

Conclusions: Working in a SARC is stressful and emotionally difficult work. This study provides valuable insights about the individual and environmental factors SARC staff believe are required to have a happy and healthy workforce delivering a gold standard of care to victim-survivors of sexual violence.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology > Forensic Psychology Research Group
Item ID: 30667
Notes on copyright: © 2020. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/
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Depositing User: Miranda Horvath
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2020 14:06
Last Modified: 22 Aug 2020 17:51
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/30667

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