The Toronto Police Services is here to provide assistance and support. For further information on the community support resources available to you, sexual assault investigations, possible outcomes and the criminal court process visit our Guide for Survivors of Sexual Assault, which can be found at the bottom of the page.
Along the bottom you will see quick exit instructions. If at any time you feel you are in danger please call 911.
The process for the Sexual Assault Evidence Kit (SAEK) is voluntary, which means that your consent is required. As a survivor of sexual assault, we support the choices that you make with respect to the process that is best for you.
The SAEK is a specially sealed box that contains envelopes, bottles and other containers used to collect evidence. Evidence can be collected at many different points in time, however the sooner the better. There is a greater chance of collecting physical evidence within 72 hours of the assault; however evidence may still be available up to 12 days later. In order to increase the likelihood of obtaining forensic evidence; keep the clothing worn during the assault, try not to urinate before you reach the hospital, and try not to shower or use a feminine douche product.
A SAEK collects forensic evidence. A specially-trained sexual assault care nurse may collect samples from anywhere on your body including your mouth, vaginal and/or anal cavities, fingernails, and other parts of your body that the offender touched during the assault. If there are signs you may have been drugged, a toxicology kit may be collected. Clothing and undergarments may be collected as evidence. The kit is applied in the same way regardless of gender identity. The SAEK is a specially sealed box that contains envelopes, bottles and other containers used to collect evidence. Evidence can be collected at many different points in time, however the sooner the better.
There is a greater chance of collecting physical evidence within 72 hours of the assault; however evidence may still be available up to 12 days later. In order to increase the likelihood of obtaining forensic evidence; keep the clothing worn during the assault, try not to urinate before you reach the hospital, and try not to shower or use a feminine douche product.
Although evidence is not absolutely necessary in a prosecution, it greatly assists the police with their investigation. Evidence is very important in any investigation; therefore, the collection of evidence in a timely manner should be considered. The likelihood of collecting evidence diminished when reporting is delayed.
The SAEK is conducted at a hospital in a Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Care Centre (SA/DVCC).
Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Care Centres in Toronto are:
Scarborough and Rouge Hospital
3030 Birchmount Road
Toronto, ON M1W 3W3
The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids)
Suspected Child Abuse and Neglect (SCAN) Program
555 University Avenue
Room 6427 Black Wing
416-813-6275 (day time)
416-813-7500 (24 Hours)
Women’s College Hospital
Sexual Assault Domestic Violence Care Centre
76 Grenville Street
Toronto, ON M5S 1B2
A Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Care Centre provides emergency service, follow-up healthcare and counselling to both female and male survivors of recent sexual assault and intimate partner violence. Care is available 24 hours/day and includes: crisis intervention; physical examination; documentation of injuries (including photographs); testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy; forensic evidence collection for release to police (or stored at the hospital); safety planning; and referrals for ongoing support. Follow-up health care and counselling are also available at a SA/DVCC.
The process for the SAEK is voluntary, which means that your consent is required. As a survivor of sexual assault, we support the choices that you make with respect to the process that is best for you.
The following choices are available to survivors of sexual assault regarding the SAEK:
The SAEK is retrieved by police from the hospital and immediately turned over to a Forensic Identification Officer. A complete list of the contents of the SAEK is conducted to ensure all exhibits collected are accounted for. When reviewing the details of the case, the Forensic Identification Officer will contact the Centre of Forensic Sciences (CFS) in order to obtain permission for the SAEK to be submitted for analysis. Not all exhibits are submitted for analysis. Based on the details of the case, only the relevant exhibits from the SAEK and/or clothing will be submitted.
The time it takes to administer a SAEK is case specific and can vary greatly depending on injuries sustained, specimens required to be collected or other supports required. The Sexual Assault Care Centre Nurse will be available to listen to you and provide you with information.
If you choose not to report the sexual assault to police, the kit will be kept at the hospital for six months. After that, it is destroyed by the hospital. If you choose to report the sexual assault, you must agree to have the kit given to police. If your case is unsolved or if you choose not to proceed, the kit is kept forever.
The Toronto Police Service respects the rights of survivors to choose what happens with their Sexual Assault Evidence Kit. However, in order to have the best evidence possible for future investigations (e.g. if a survivor decides to report the assault more than six months later), the Service asks survivors to please consider agreeing to have kits given to police. The kit will not be accessed or tested without your consent.
This Project has been made possible by a grant from the Government of Ontario
For the purpose of this website, the Toronto Police Service has used “survivor” as an umbrella term to refer to anyone who has been sexually assaulted. However, we support a person’s right to choose how they wish to be identified. It is also important to note, this is not legal advice. Every effort is made to provide precise information, however your rights and a police officer’s responsibilities depend on the situation. If, at any time, you're unsure of your rights you can ask the police officer. They are required to tell you. The Toronto Police Service bears no responsibility for information on other websites. While we strive to maintain accurate and survivor-focused resources, it cannot be guaranteed. This project has been made possible by a grant from the Government of Ontario.