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Andalusia implements the protocol for action in the event of suspicions of “bugging”.

Andalusia implements the protocol for action in the event of suspicions of bugging
The Departments of the Presidency, Health, Equality and Justice have worked together to update the procedure.

Andalusian Regional Government, through the Departments of the Presidency, Interior, Social Dialogue and Administrative Simplification; Health and Consumer Affairs; Social Inclusion, Youth, Families and Equality; and Justice, Local Administration and Public Administration, has implemented the protocol for action in the event of suspicion of chemical submission by sharp objects.

These areas have worked together to update the existing procedure – the Protocol of Action and Health Coordination in the event of sexual assaults in Andalusia 2020 – as a result of the assaults that have occurred in recent weeks. The previous text already included the health action in case of suspicion of chemical submission.

The new text, which includes the current cases of sharp objects, reminds us that these ‘punctures’ are aggressions and constitute a crime, which entail the issuing of a report of injuries and urgent health care, given the possible situation of chemical submission associated with the puncture.

In this sense, the general objective of this protocol is to provide an efficient social response, through the collaboration of all the administrations involved: the aforementioned departments, together with the State Security Forces and Corps, the Andalusian Institute for Women, the Courts, the Public Prosecutor’s Office and the Institute of Legal Medicine.

Specifically, the protocol establishes a procedure for assaults by ‘pricking’ with or without sexual aggression and a diagnosis of suspicion of chemical submission. It also offers the appropriate medical-legal response that guarantees the rights of the victim and a procedural guide at the out-of-hospital level defining the steps to follow and the essential legal documentation.

Thus, once the victim has been attended to in the emergency room of a hospital or primary care centre, or through the 112 emergency service, samples will be taken and stored in clinical analysis laboratories or areas entrusted for this purpose. They will then be sent to the National Institute of Toxicology.

In addition, among other measures, the protocol contemplates offering psychological and legal support for the victims of these criminal acts. It should be remembered that the Andalusian Women’s Institute has two assistance programmes for victims of sexual aggression: the 24-hour telephone helpline service against sexual violence and the legal advice, legal assistance and psychological care service for women victims of sexual violence and sexual abuse in Andalusia.

For its part, the Regional Ministry of Justice recalls the importance of victims reporting this type of aggression immediately, in order to activate the necessary processes in the Justice Administration.

The document defines chemical submission (CS) as sexual aggression, robbery, extortion and/or mistreatment suffered by a person to whom a psychoactive substance has been deliberately administered in order to annul their will. It also stresses that SQ is a health problem and a form of violence.

The Andalusian Health Service has already sent the protocol to all health centres and it will soon be published on the website.

 

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