“The extent [of] institutionalised inequality & structural discrimination has been demonstrated by recent court rulings concluding that the police did not act unlawfully at the Sarah Everard vigil.”
By Alia Butt, Women Will Not Be Silenced
Women Will Not Be Silenced (WWNBS) was formed after the vigil for Sarah Everard was shamelessly used as an example to push the police, crime, sentencing and courts bill on the general public. The government has made its dislike for protests clear before and is now attempting to make protests more difficult in future. It is seeking to provide the police more power to control and shut down demonstrations post covid19 restrictions. We must not allow this to happen by any means and we must continue to resist the attempt to silence us into a passive compliance with a broken system that seeks to disempower the majority.
WWNBS is an organisation representing all women. We are dedicated to bringing attention to the various forms of violence suffered by women, whether this be physical, sexual, psychological, institutional, economic or the many microaggressions women face every single day for failing to adhere to the false ideals set upon them by an unequal society.
Globally, 137 women are killed by a member of their family every day. Nearly half of human trafficking victims are adult women, and 3 out of 4 child victims are girls. Over a quarter of women aged 15-49 have experienced physical or sexual violence from their partners.
Violence and terrorisation of women at the hands of men is also a huge problem on our own doorstep. As is the fact that we continue to fail to take the matter of violence against women seriously. Despite the fact that here in the U.K. a woman is killed at the hands of a man every 3 days, the murder of Sarah Everard shocked the nation. This type of shock needs to be questioned, given the horrendous commonplace nature of violence against women.
The extent to which institutionalised inequality and structural discrimination is problematic has been demonstrated by recent court rulings concluding that the police did not act unlawfully at the Sarah Everard vigil, and that ‘police officers at the vigil did their best to peacefully disperse the crowd’. To those present and anyone who has witnessed the horrific footage of police brutality – including the public stripping of female protestors by police – during Bristol ‘Kill the Bill’ protests, this is clearly a misjudgement.
It is clear to many that this government is on a mission to deny the existence of all kinds of oppression, despite the growing demand for change. This only makes clearer the need for and power of such demands.
Given both the disgusting violence women continue to face at the hands of men alongside the violence perpetuated by the police over the past few weeks, WWNBS have put together the following demands:
• Investment in domestic abuse services, rape crisis support, the NHS and other vital care and support services for women
• Investment in social housing for women and children at risk of domestic abuse
• An immediate and urgent inquiry to the unacceptably low conviction rates for rape and the systematic failure of the criminal justice system to provide justice for women
Policing in the UK
• A full apology is issued by the metropolitan police for the events on Clapham common
• A full external enquiry is opened into the attitudes and behaviour of the police force towards women
• The police bill is dropped and our right to protest is upheld
Read the full statement on the website, and find our open letter published in the Guardian.
WWNBS is determined to keep this discussion alive and to put an end to the continued suffering of women at the hands of men.
We will be seen.
We will be heard.
- Women Will Not Be Silenced Website:
- Guardian letter: