Responding to Disclosures of Sexual Violence

Online Training

In 2011, the Province of Ontario developed the Sexual Violence Action Plan with the goal to “prevent sexual violence and improve responses to survivors”. The plan makes clear that “early and effective interventions from front-line service providers and other professionals can help mitigate both short and longer-term trauma for survivors”.[i]

This training has been developed for front-line responders and service providers in the law enforcement, social work, and education sectors.

The overarching training outcome is to develop effective responses to victims/survivors who report or/disclose experiences of sexual violence that will sustain support and intervention from that point forward.

Research has shown that professionals who respond to disclosures of sexual violence can significantly impact the health and safety of survivors. The goal of this training is to teach you to respond to victims/survivors who disclose or report an experience of sexual violence in effective and supportive ways that will sustain support and intervention from that point forward. We’ll examine a range of critical issues that affect positive relationship building and intervention from the moment a victim/survivor makes an initial disclosure or report.

During the training, you will view videos showing both supportive and unsupportive responses. The videos also explore gender, race, class, culture, disability and sexuality, as they relate to understanding sexual violence. The videos are key learning tools for exploring the multiple issues that can influence both the victim or survivor and responder.  They will help you develop an in-depth understanding of the barriers and stigma that affect notions of consent and coercion.
The skills you learn in this training will provide you with effective first response tools you can use in all disclosure situations.

The views expressed in this training are the views of the Centre for Research & Education on Violence Against Women & and do not necessarily reflect those of the Province.

[i] Changing Attitudes, Changing Lives: Ontario’s Sexual Violence Action Plan. Toronto, ON: Ontario Women’s Directorate. Retrieved March 20, 2014 from: