26 April 2022
Spiking is a nasty crime that can cause serious distress and harm to victims and cause lasting damage to their mental and, in some cases, physical health.
Emergency Departments are not able to provide forensic medical investigation and we welcome the committee’s recognition that alternative environments to allow proper investigation must be made available.
It is vital that victims of spiking who have then deplorably experienced sexual assault and/or rape are properly supported and receive considered, sensitive and specialised care. The Royal College advocates that these victims, of the most heinous crimes, are supported at Sexual Assault and Rape Centres (SARC) where they will receive the support, time and advice of sensitive and trained professionals. SARC facilities are able to provide emotional and holistic support to victims as well as advice and after care.
Where a victim of spiking attends an Emergency Department, this should recorded under the Information Sharing to Tackle Violence (ISTV) program as an assault.
The Royal College condemns spiking in any form and agrees with the Home Affairs Committee recommendation to increase education and awareness about spiking, and to improve the reporting of the crime of spiking.