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Stirling Netball society hold spiking awareness event

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On February 23 the Netball society held an event to help inform attendees of the many aspects of spiking, with representatives from the organisation WomensAid also present.

The event began with an overview of what spiking is (when someone puts drugs or alcohol into your drink without you knowing) as well as providing statistics from YouGov stating that one in nine women and one in seventeen men reported to have been spiked.

The symptoms were then outlined which include:

  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Poor coordination
  • Hallucinations

After out lining the symptoms club president, Caitlin McGee, gave her personal testimony of her own experience of being spiked. Following this, when asked why they felt it was important to hold this event McGee said: “Because I didn’t think it would happen to me and it did. It can happen to anyone, and I didn’t know what to do. I bet you other people wouldn’t (know what to do) and so more awareness needs to be brought because lives could be lost.”

Following McGee’s personal testimony information about what to do in the event you/your friend/you notice a stranger has been spiked was shared, which includes:

  • Tell a friend
  • Stop drinking
  • Report to a staff member
  • Offer emotional support
  • Call 999 if situation worsens

This information aligned with the purpose of the event as outlined by McGee saying: “I hope that in the future, God forbid, if other people were spiked (or a stranger) people know what to do or who to contact and the kind of protocols.”

The new technique of spiking via injection was also covered as the new risks associated with this were outlined e.g. blood viruses. This was done in conjunction with what to do in this event e.g. go to A&E and report to the police.

The Netball society concluded their segment of the evening with aftercare of being spiked such as:

  • Taking your time to go back out
  • Feeling more comfortable using anti-spiking devices such as drinks covers (which were available after the event)
  • Speak to someone about your experience, whether that be a friend or someone professional

The WomensAid representatives covered ground of why people spike (with reasons including pranking, sexual assault and robbery) citing that the practice is rooted in gender inequality with victims being majority women.

WomensAid also outlined the wide array of services they provide such as a drop-in service, refugee accommodation, counselling, high risk victims service as well as other local and national services.

The WomensAid website/resources can be found here: https://www.womensaid.org.uk/

As well as the Stirling safe taxi scheme which provides a route home if you or someone you know is in danger and need a safe way home: https://stirling.nightline.ac.uk/safetaxi/

Featured Image Credit: Stirling netball team facebook

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