George Galloway makes his position on VAWG clear:
Naz Shah has spoken publicly, on numerous occasions, about her experience of forced marriage and the domestic and sexual violence and abuse she lived with daily. The response Shah has received demonstrates why so many women and children never speak publicly about their abuse. They are labeled liars and harassed.
George Galloway has made it abundantly clear that he doesn't care about women who experience domestic and sexual violence and abuse. A man who can publicly label a survivor a liar won't defend specialist services for women. He won't fight against brutal cuts to women's services or recognise the need of children to access their own specialist support services.
Galloway is already on record claiming that the statistically insignificant number of false rape allegations (many which involve misidentifying an attacker or a woman withdrawing her complaint following harassment from the rapist), are more important than the 80 000 women who are raped every year in England and Wales.
Galloway hasn't just labelled Shah a liar. He's also approached Shah's former husband to ask him about the marriage. According to Galloway, the word of a man claiming he wasn't abusive is worth more than the words of the victim. The fact that, statistically speaking, more men lie about being perpetrators than women file formal complaints about abuse is irrelevant to Galloway.
Is this really a man we want as an MP? A man who publicly and repeatedly labels women liars for experiencing domestic and sexual violence and abuse?
UPDATE: When writing this article, we universalised the experience of women and erased the lived reality of Naz Shah and other women of colour living in the UK. We allowed our anger at the continuing evidence of Galloway's misogyny to override the very specific, intersectional reality of Galloway labelling a woman of colour a liar about her experience of forced marriage. Galloway's statements about Shah are both racist and misogynist and our post above does not reflect this.
Specialised services for women of colour are under greater threat than general services for women. Forced marriage and honour based violence are subject to numerous discussions at government level but neither the policies developed or funding of services adequately reflect their need within communities.
We apologise for erasing women of colour from their experiences.
Thank you to Samantha Asumadu for calling us out.