Terms of Service
On our website, you can enter the SMS & Online chat service when you see the floating bubble in the bottom right corner of your screen.
SMS & Chat services are open from 4pm-8pm every Thursday- Saturday.
With the chat bubble, you can communicate with one of our skilled volunteers in real time. The chat is anonymous and is made to continuously cleanse the users’ url information so that it cannot be tracked. We also don’t record the talks.
Some users may use the chat service for the following:
Seek support regarding impacts of a recent or historical sexual assault
Ask questions – was this assault? Sometimes it’s blurry. We understand that.
Seek support getting grounded
Find help in getting referrals to other programs or services
Ask a question about something else related to sexual violence
Explore options if you are wondering about reporting to the criminal justice system (it’s your choice to do that, and we can help you make an informed choice).
- Receive emotional support and someone to talk to.
- And more!
Terms and Conditions
for sms & online chat
This is a free, confidential, anonymous, and professional chat service for:
- Vulnerable youth at-risk of sexual violence and sexual exploitation or feel unsafe at home
- Survivors of sexual violence and/or harassment
- Individuals who support survivors and vulnerable youth
Through the online chat you can expect to connect with a trained facilitator who can offer insights into questions about sexual violence, help navigate what resources are available in your area, and support you with grounding and calming techniques, if needed.
Any type of language that is threatening and/or violent, including but not limited to swearing, sexually abusive statements, and death threats violates our facilitator’s rights and safety, therefore the facilitator will end the chat.
During your chat, you are free to use your name or an alias and you do not have to provide us with any details you do not feel comfortable sharing.
The chat will remain confidential; the Women’s Support Network of York Region does not trace live chat conversations. Our system uses end-to-end encryption, which ensures that if the data is being intercepted it will appear differently than the way you see it in your chat box.
Anonymous records of this chat service may be retained for the purpose of training and/or quality control.
You have the option to remain anonymous when using our online chat. Anonymous means our support facilitators will not require you to provide any identifying information during your conversation. You may choose to give us your general location if you would like a facilitator to help you find service in your community, but it is not mandatory to provide this information.
If you request a follow-up and/or would like ongoing support from the Women’s Support Network, a form of contact will be requested, only to be shared in the method agreed too.
If you give us information that can identify you and the situation is considered dangerous to you or others, the facilitator is legally obligated to involve an external agency. This is part of our “Duty to Report”.
DUTY TO REPORT EXISTS IN THE FOLLOWING CASES:
1 – If you are under the age of sixteen (16):
a) If you inform us that someone is hurting you, has hurt you, or is likely to hurt you in the future, or you have witnessed domestic violence. (If you are under the age of 16, services will be offered to you from Children’s Aid Society.)
b) If you inform us that you have been abused by a professional in your life e.g. doctor, teacher, social worker, parent/step-parent etc.
2 – If you inform us you are planning to hurt yourself or someone else, have a plan and the means.