Content Warning: Violence against women
No woman should be in fear of how they dress, where they walk, or what time they go out. Sarah Everard took all the precautions women have been told they need to, but her life was still taken. We continue to question why this keeps happening. Why do women continue to be attacked, raped, or murdered?
The extent of victim-blaming that has occurred in the wake of the Sarah Everard murder investigation is unacceptable and we want to remind everyone that the ONLY person ever responsible for any form of violence, including sexual violence, is the perpetrator. It is never the victim’s fault and society’s rhetoric needs to shift from “why was Sarah Everard walking home alone?” to “What possessed this person to murder Sarah?”
Reading the experiences of women over this past week has shown that this is something we don’t talk about enough and by not doing so we risk being complicit in the problem. We need to widen the conversation about these issues, educating others on their privilege, calling out others on their behaviours, and how they do not support the inclusion or safety of women.
This is something that we all need to do.
We at Christ Church Students’ Union believe that sexual violence, sexual harassment, relationship abuse, bullying, harassment, and hate crime are never ok and you can anonymously report this to the University via the Report & Support website, which also provides further information and options for direct support.
Remember, if you have experienced any form of sexual violence, no matter where you were, what you were doing, what you were wearing, what you were saying, if you were drunk or under the influence of drugs, it was not your fault. You are not to blame.