Thursday, November 16, 2006

Take Back The Night 2

Another post, so soon? This is mostly a quick update - a few pieces of news and details of next week's Reclaim The Night march in London. Again, it's about rape. I wish I didn't have to blog about this and I wish I didn't have to get angry. Which is a round about way of saying I wish rape didn't happen, or that at least the victims were treated with some respect.

- Happy news first. Well, sort of. Pakistan's national assembly has voted to amend rape laws. As I understand it, they will no longer take place in Sharia courts - which demand four witnesses to the rape - but in civil courts, making it easier to prpsecute. Small victory, but it's a start. Statistics on the BBC website suggest that in Pakistan, a woman is raped every two hours, and gang-raped every eight hours.

- A report for the Association of Chief Police Officers suggests that drugs such as Rohypnol are far less frequently used in rape cases than is commonly supposed. The front cover of this morning's Metro claimed 'Drug rape a myth'. Thanks for that biassed reporting, then. Regardless of the Rohypnol statistics, my real problem with the report was the inevitable blame that fell on the victims when they had been drinking. No change there, then.

- Reclaim The Night rally, London, 25th November:

In Britain there are an estimated 47,000 rapes every year. And each year, an estimated 300,000 women are sexually assaulted (British Crime Survey 2001). Yet Britain's rape conviction rate is at its lowest ever, at just 5.3%.

In the workplace, one in two women are sexually harassed. Now more than ever, women must come together to say 'no' to violence against women.

Reclaim The Night
Saturday 25 November
Assemble 6pm at Trafalgar Square
8pm mixed rally at University of London Union, Malet Street

Because, strange as it may sound, I do in fact have the right to walk home from the bus after dark - and in the winter, it's always after dark - without being raped.


At 2:15 PM, Blogger Katie said...


THEY DID IT! They did it, they did it, they did it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I thought the measure died because members of Parliament threatened to walk out when the president even proposed putting it to Parliament or something...

Now it's PASSED Parliament?

I don't understand what happened...but boy, am I glad it happened.

Now I've just got to get my Multiple Assailants class under my belt, get teacher training, and by 10 years from now take a trip to Pakistan to train IMPACT teachers there.

I could do it. Yeah...I mean, I'm totally already going to be learning what it feels like to fight in a hijab or burka when I take my teacher training. (We have lots of Somalis here who wear a variety of veils.) So I'll be all ready for Pakistan, right? :-P

Then we can get those numbers down even more.

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