Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

In the News: women’s right to vote, elderly perpetrators, and CSA

A Woman’s Right to Vote via @womensaid

When people learn that domestic abuse can deny a woman her right to vote, they can hardly believe it. But it’s true: the provisions for anonymous registration on the electoral roll exclude many domestic abuse survivors. With support, however, it is possible for some to exercise their democratic right, and Women’s Aid is urging domestic abuse services to support survivors to register wherever possible, before the deadline of 31 May (later than the general deadline of 22 May). To help, we have produced guidance with the Electoral Commission which can be accessed here.  ...

Media representation of violence against women: the reality of elderly perpetrators by Claire Simpson

...The majority of stories in which the perpetrator was over 60 years old did not question his fitness to stand trial nor did they include his age in the headline. When the man was over 80 his age was always included in the title. Why is VAW presented as more shocking the older the perpetrator? Many of the columns highlighted the age and apparent frailty of the men, sometimes in wonderment at how such a physically or mentally weak individual could be violent/dangerous, other times to create sympathy for him1-5 ... 

These viewpoints were occasionally supported by photographs. The Daily Mirror1 was the only paper to include photographs of the elderly men looking frail. One story, in which an 86 year old man stabbed his wife to death, featured an image of him being put into an ambulance on a stretcher. Almost in juxtaposition, this article is the only one from my week of media monitoring to mention VAW as a social issue making this column an example of good and bad practice. ...

Child victims of sexual abuse in families let down by system: report

Child victims of sexual abuse within families are being let down by the system, the children’s commissioner for England has said.

Young people are often left to report the abuse themselves when the authorities fail to pick up on signs, a report by the commissioner’s office found.

Even after their experiences are disclosed, investigations into sexual offences against children tend to take an average of 100 days longer than those against adults, it said.

Victims also often face long waits for therapy, and many are blocked from having counselling in the run-up to their court cases. ...



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