Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

In the News 25.31

Canada judge critiques system in sexual assault case: 'No one asks to be raped' by Ashifa Kassam

A judge in Ontario has used his verdict in a sexual assault trial to deliver a scathing critique of rape myths, the treatment of sexual assault complainants in Canada’s legal system and expectations on how survivors should act after an assault.

“The myths of rape should be dispelled once and for all,” Justice Marvin Zuker wrote in his 179-page decision on Thursday. “It doesn’t matter if the victim was drinking, out at night alone, sexually exploited, on a date with the perpetrator, or how the victim was dressed. No one asks to be raped.”

The sexual assault trial over which he was presiding began in February, on the same day in the same Toronto courthouse as the trial of former radio star Jian Ghomeshi. The high-profile trial sparked a national conversation on sexual assault before Ghomeshi was acquitted of all charges in March. ...

Suicide rates in women's prison have soared amid 'horrifying levels of self harm' by Rachael Pells

The number of women killing themselves in prison has “risen alarmingly”, new government figures have revealed - prompting warnings from top charity leaders over unsafe jail conditions.

Statistics published by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) show the total number of deaths classed as “self-inflicted” rose by 28 per cent over the past 12 months compared with the previous year.

Eleven women took their own lives during the same period across England and Wales, an increase of 1,100 per cent on the previous year, when one death was recorded. ....

Bill Cosby drops remainder of lawsuits against women accusing him of assault

Comedian Bill Cosby on Thursday dropped the remaining counts of a lawsuit he filed against one of the women accusing him of sexual assault, along with several others, claiming they violated the terms of a confidential settlement in another lawsuit.

The dismissal comes 10 days after US district judge Eduardo Robreno ruled that Cosby could not sue Andrea Constand, her mother, Gianna Constand, or her attorneys, Dolores Troiani and Bebe Kivitz, for speaking to investigators about her accusations.

Cosby filed the suit in February, accusing the Constands, the lawyers and American Media Inc, publisher of the National Enquirer, of violating the terms of a 2006 confidential settlement. ...

'I begged them to kill me instead': women in South Sudan raped under nose of UN | Simona Foltyn

It was just before noon on 18 July when the soldiers grabbed Theresa*. She was only metres away from safety, a short dash from the UN gate that marked the entrance to her home, a camp for internally displaced people in Juba, the South Sudanese capital.

Even though they were in plain sight, the soldiers took their time, discussing Theresa’s fate before offering her a choice between two cruel options. “I could choose the one who would rape me, or they all would,” Theresa, not her real name, recalled. “I begged them to kill me instead.”

The five men, all members of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), the national military force, dragged her a few metres to the side of the road. Then they raped her – in broad daylight, right there on the side of the road. ...

It's not Muslims who are most likely to kill you in terrorist attacks – it's men by Janey Stephenson

Mass male violence is everywhere right now. First it was Orlando. Then Nice. And Bavaria. Munich. Kabul. Fort Myers. Sagamihara.

As each massacre is reported, ministers and media leap to unpick each individual attacker’s motivations. Immediately, the snap judgments come out: if they were brown, they were a terrorist. If not, they were mentally ill.

Further probing exposes then their beliefs and contradictions: the Orlando murderer Omar Mateen worked as an armed guard for security firm G4S for nine years; the Sagamihara murderer worked at the care home he targeted but apparently believed disabled people should be euthanised.  ...

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