Third Party Reporting

PREA THIRD PARTY REPORTING

Sexual abuse in detention facilities is a vastly underreported crime.  As in the community many victims of sexual abuse behind bars do not report abuse due to shame, or a fear that they won’t be believed.  It is also common for victims to face retaliation for speaking out.  In recognition of these barriers, the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) standards include provisions to make reporting safer and easier for victims of sexual abuse and sexual harassment.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE A THIRD PARTY REPORTER?

A third party reporter is someone who reports sexual abuse and sexual harassment but is neither the victim nor the abuser.  This person may have been told by the victim about the abuse or harassment, or witnessed it first – hand.  “Third party” includes other inmates, members of staff, family members, lawyers, contract employees, service providers or community or religious volunteers, among others.

 

HOW CAN A THIRD PARTY REPORT SEXUAL ABUSE AND SEXUAL HARASSMENT?

A third party can report abuse using the same channels as a victim of sexual abuse.  Under the PREA Standards, Piedmont Regional Jail must accept all third-party reports received through:

  • Verbal reports (made in-person or via telephone)
  • Written communication such as a letter or email
  • Contact with Jail officials
  • Contact the PREA Investigator (434) 392-1601, Ext. 247
  • Contact the PREA Coordinator (434) 392-1601, Ext. 297
  • Leave a message at  (434) 392-3819
  • Contact Southside Center for Prevention of Violence 1-888-819-2926

A third party can submit a report without disclosing her/his name or that of the alleged victim or abuser.  A report may be submitted in a language other than English.  Also a third party has the right to assist an inmate with completing and filing her/his own report of abuse or harassment.

Piedmont Regional Jail will respond to any and all reports of sexual abuse or sexual harassment from a third-party in the same way that they would respond to one made by a victim.  The Jails protocols for responding to a report include keeping the victim safe from retaliation and informing that person about the progress of the investigation.