ISVA

ISVAs (independent sexual violence advisors) are key supporters in making an informed choice to report to the college, university or police. They can give an "informed choice session", give information about the process, guide you through it and accompany and support you in meetings.

The local ISVAs in Oxford are run by OSARCC. They include:

  • Oxford University ISVA

  • Oxfordshire Community ISVA

To find out more about ISVAs, check out our Getting Support FAQs.

Note: ISVAs are not official legal experts, although they can be helpful during the legal process. An informed choice session with an ISVA does not replace a consultation with a solicitor.

 

Free of charge, confidential and open to all genders.

Citizens Advice

A registered UK charity offering confidential advice on your options and rights. They are available for free with detailed information pages online, as well as advice provided over the phone and in person. They help millions of people every year across the UK including in Wales and Scotland.

They give independent, impartial support, including on:

  • housing

  • harassment

  • support for witnesses in courts through the Witness Service

Call (open Monday to Friday)

  • 0800 144 8848 (England)

  • 0800 702 2020  (Wales)

  • 18001 then 0800 144 8884 (Relay, textphone)

Law Centres Network

Law Centres are independent, not-for-profit, community-based services specialising in social welfare law, including: 

  • welfare rights

  • disability rights

  • housing and homelessness

  • employment rights

  • discrimination

  • community care

Note that Law Centres typically do not provide support for sexual and domestic violence cases, which fall under criminal law.

To find your nearest Law Centre, click here.

gov.uk

Browse information pages on crime, justice and the law, including your rights, going to court, reporting crimes and how to access legal support.

To check if you can get legal aid, click here.

Find a Solicitor

Find a Solicitor is a free service run by The Law Society. Solicitors give legal advice and can represent clients in court or appoint barristers for them.

You can search for solicitors in England and Wales (organisations and individuals) by issue, location and/or name.

Solicitors are regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

Advocate

Advocate is an independent charity that finds free (pro bono) legal assistance from volunteer barristers. Supported by the Bar Council. Available across England and Wales.

Barristers can represent you in court and give legal advice. They cannot prepare a case or lodge papers themselves, these must be done by a solicitor.

CrimeStoppers

An independent UK charity that allows people to anonymously, confidentially and securely give information about crimes, including r*pe and sexual offences, harassment, domestic abuse, and violence and hate crimes generally.

If the information you give leads to an arrest or is of significant use you will be rewarded up to £1000.

Information provided can be useful on a local and national level.

To give information anonymously, click here.

Alternatively, call 0800 555 111

They also provide:

  • an information page for sexual harassment (click here).

  • a specific service for anonymously reporting sexual harassment on UK rail networks. Call 0800 783 0137 or use the online reporting tool (click here).

From Report to Court: A handbook for adult survivors of sexual violence

Provided by Rights of Women.

This guide is excellent and highly thorough, considered the gold standard resource for adult survivors of sexual violence who are thinking about the legal process.

Women's Aid: The Survivor's Handbook

Women's Aid is a national charity working to end domestic abuse against women and children.

The Survivor's Handbook provides practical support and information for women experiencing domestic abuse, including legal rights and procedures. 

Mind UK: Legal Line

Contact the Mind UK Legal Line to ask about being detained under the Mental Health Act (sectioning), mental capacity, community care, and discrimination and equality.

Call 0300 466 6463

Email legal@mind.org.uk

Rights of Women

Rights of Women is a women’s charity working in a number of ways to help women through the law.

They offer:

  • Criminal law advice line (including for sexual offences, domestic violence and reporting) (for women in England and Wales) (open Tuesday to Friday) Call 020 7251 8887 or click here to find out more.

  • From Report to Court: A handbook for adult survivors of sexual violence (highly recommended) (click here)

  • A guide to what to do if you have been sexually harassed, assaulted, or raped on campus (click here)

LawWorks

LawWorks is a charity working in England and Wales to connect volunteer lawyers with people in need of legal advice, who are not eligible for legal aid and cannot afford to pay and with the not-for-profit organisations that support them.
 

Find a legal advice clinic near you. Click here

 

Note that sexual violence comes under the area of law "Crime". There is a separate category for domestic violence.

Advicenow

Advicenow is an independent, not-for-profit website, run by the charity Law for Life: the Foundation for Public Legal Education.

 

It provides accurate, practical information on rights and the law in England and Wales.

FLOWS

FLOWS (Finding Legal Options for Women Survivors) is an independent legal support service, designed to help protect women against domestic abuse, anywhere in England and Wales.

They offer:

  • the FLOWS network: an interactive map to find trusted advice agencies or legal aid family solicitors that have partnered with FLOWS (click here)

  • help with accessing legal aid

  • help applying for non-molestation and occupation orders

  • a family law advice service

Solace SARC

Solace SARC (sexual assault referral centre) is a service in Bicester and Slough that provides specialised services for survivors. They are known for being the only service able to provide forensic medical examinations (FMEs) to recent survivors, which can greatly help survivors with reporting (see our FAQs).

Free of charge and confidential.

You do not need to report to the police.

Flag DV

Service for domestic abuse victims in Oxfordshire, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, and Hampshire.

Offers:

  • free legal advice session (to access, fill out the referral form on their website) (click here)

  • financial aid to help with legal costs (click here)

  • directory of useful resources and services (click here)

Open to women, LGBTQ+ individuals and men affected by domestic abuse.

Thames Valley Police

Thames Valley Police is the police force covering the counties of Buckinghamshire, Berkshire and Oxfordshire.

If someone is in immediate danger or if a crime has just happened, call 999.

If you have a hearing or speech impairment, use the textphone service 18000 or text 999 if you’ve pre-registered with the emergencySMS service.

You can report a crime (e.g. harassment, sexual violence, domestic violence, spiking):

  • online (click here)

  • via. a phone call (call 101, open 24/7)

  • by visiting a police station

For information about what happens after a report of sexual violence, click here.

Clare's Law gives any member of the public the right to ask the police if their partner may pose a risk to them. To make a Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (DVDS) application, click here.

For information on how to apply for an injunction, a special court order that can protect you or your children from being harmed or threatened (non-molestation order) or prevent someone from living or entering your home (occupation order), click here.

To give information anonymously, use CrimeStoppers

Victim Support

Victim Support is an independent, free and confidential service for people who need help after a crime, regardless of whether or not it has been reported. Crimes include domestic violence, sexual violence and hate crimes.


They offer:

  • information pages, including a summary of legal orders that can be used to protect survivors of domestic abuse (click here)

  • an online referral form for getting support and advice

  • a free 24/7 Supportline

Acas

Acas (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) is an independent public body in the UK that works with employers and employees to improve workplace relationships.​

If you have been sexually harassed at work, witnessed sexual harassment or are handling a sexual harassment complaint, click here for their advice pages. This will help understand your rights and options.

Call their helpline for any employment law or workplace advice. Confidential and free. Open Monday to Friday.

Call 0300 123 1100

Or use 18001 0300 123 1100 (Relay UK)

Shelter

A national housing and homelessness charity. 

They offer:

  • one-to-one personalised help with housing issues and homelessness

  • housing advice online (click here)

  • free webchat with an adviser (click here)

  • free legal advice and solicitors (click here)

Free Emergency Helpline

If you are:

  • homeless

  • have nowhere to stay tonight

  • are worried about losing your home in the next two months

  • are at risk of harm or abuse

Call 0808 800 4444

Legal
support

(Oxfordshire + UK)
Law