Families of people who have learning disabilities face many challenges.
It’s often a struggle to get the right support, and people are sometimes left feeling misunderstood or let down by services. People with learning disabilities are more likely to experience sexual abuse and this can impact on the person’s family as well as the victim. Families and care givers may need support to navigate the complex situation they are dealing with. An ISVA can offer support both for the victim and their family to help them through this and can also help them understand the impact of sexual violence and how to support the person in their recovery.
ISVAs offer advice and advocacy to victims who have reported an incident of sexual violence. Advice is also available to young people and adults with a learning disability, who are thinking of reporting an incident to the Police but would like to know more about the Criminal Justice System and what happens when a report is made.
An ISVA can talk to the police or other agencies on your behalf to ensure your voice is heard.
Your ISVA will:
- treat you fairly,
- be consistent with your support,
- offer you supportive non-judgemental support,
- find out your communication and information needs,
- record these communication and information needs clearly and consistently on your record,
- share your information and communication needs when needed (and with your permission), for example if they are referring you to another service,
- take action to give you the right support. For example, offering you easy read information or making sure there is someone there to support you with communication.