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Sexual Assault

Sexual assault is when an individual uses physical or psychological violence for sexual purposes. This type of assault may or may not be accompanied by physical injuries.

The use of threats, force, fraud or a position of authority by the aggressor are determining factors in assessing whether or not a sexual assault has occurred. If the victim obeys the aggressor, the justice system will not necessarily interpret the reaction as consent.

There are different levels of sexual assault: sexual touching, sexual assault and aggravated sexual assault and sexual assault with a weapon.

Prevention tips

These prevention tips are intended to help potential victims reduce the risk of being “victimized.” It is not to place any blame or responsibility on them for the situation, but to point out practical steps they can take to reduce the risk.

  • Choose well-lit roads and parking areas
  • Avoid alleyways, especially if you are alone
  • If you are a woman and you have to take the bus after dark, use the Between Stops service offered by the Montréal transit corporation (STM)
  • Watch your glass at all times – don't turn your eyes away from it for even a few moments
  • Do not accept a drink from a stranger

What to do?

If you are the victim of a recent sexual assault, whether or not you know your aggressor, call 911 immediately.

If the aggression is not recent, present yourself at your neighbourhood police station. You can also call the station for information.

Find out more

Information and referral helpline for sexual assault victims:

Directeur des poursuites criminelles et pénales (DPCP)
1 877 547-DPCP (3727)
Toll-free helpine for victims of sexual assault open monday to friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
La ligne téléphonique d'information pour les victimes de violences sexuelles est en activité du lundi au vendredi, de 8 h 30 à 16 h 30.

Provincial Helpline for Victims of Sexual Assault
514 933-9007 (1-888-933-9007 (toll-free), bilingual, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, confidential)
Services are available for all victims of sexual assault: adults, children, adolescents, incest survivors, the victim’s family and friends, and practitioners.