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I wrote some words on #IWD2018 yesterday but chickened out of posting it but now I'm unchickening out 'cause I think it's important. If you like me, please read because #MeToo #TimesUp
@ProsecuteRape @RapeCrisisEandW
not to rehash one of my more...intense twitter rages, but I just wanted to thank everyone who has shared & reached out over the last couple of days. I've had friends old & new contact me and it honestly means the world. Thank you.
People have asked how they can help & so I’m going to try my best to explain my experiences over the last 18mths so that I can best direct all those who want to help tackle head first the shitshow survivors of sexual violence find themselves in
(heads-up: it’s well long & I’m shite with words so get yourself a cuppa)
(1/27) I was assaulted in Malaysia &, as far as I’m concerned, did everything I was supposed to do afterwards. I went straight to the police. I called my embassy. I went through all the medical examinations. I sacrificed my REALLY COOL Ben Howard t-shirt (still pissed about that)
(2/27) I sat through relentless & repetitive questioning. I stayed in KL to help the police, missing a load of flights I had booked to get me to NZ. The people I had been out with gave statements which corroborated mine.
(3/27) In short, the police were provided with detailed witness statements, the names of the two bars we went to, a photo of the attacker, the GPS location of where my phone tracked me during the hours of my attack, my medical report etc. I don’t know what else I could have done.
(4/27) During my initial questioning, I was told it was extremely unlikely that they’d be able to find my attacker since I couldn’t provide an address for where it happened.
(5/27) They didn’t ask to see my phone & tbh it really didn’t occur to me to check its GPS until the day after, but when I did & saw that I’d been tracked since I turned my data on, I gave them the details straight away.
(6/27) Do you know how long it took them to act on that info? Five. days.
(7/27) They told me they were going to go to the address, which was an apartment complex, straight away. I then didn’t hear from them for *five fucking days* until I physically met with the Superintendent who told me that nobody had visited the address.
(8/27) So guess what!! My attacker was never caught. It’s also worth noting that not once did anybody direct me to any support organisations. In Malaysia, a woman is raped every 35 minutes & will have no access to support, treatment, or justice.
(9/27) If you want to help those women, then you might want to consider donating to the Malaysian Women’s Aid Organisation who work to support women facing domestic and/or sexual violence wao.org.my/About+Us_3_3_1…
(10/27) When I eventually made it to Wellington, NZ, I met with the Wellington Rape Crisis & was put on a waiting list for treatment/counselling. I spent the entirety of my year in NZ on that waiting list.
(11/27) During that year, I worked with the WRC on putting together a ‘Survival Guide’ for travellers who have experienced sexual violence whilst away from home.
(12/27)The WRC do incredible work with very limited means. According to current UN data, NZ is ranked worst of all OECD countries in terms of sexual violence. If you want to help organisations like the WRC tackle this, then please consider donating: wellingtonrapecrisis.org.nz
(13/27) I also met with HELPAuckland about using my story to create...something. I’ve spoken with Rape Crisis England & Wales at length about the same but in all honesty it seems that they are so under-resourced that they can’t even facilitate...me. Communication is hard.
(14/27) I arrived back in the UK in August 2017 & tried to refer myself to both East *and* South London Rape Crisis centres but was told that their waiting lists are closed. As you will see from the OP, this is still the case with SLRC.
(15/27) Last reported stats show that there is currently a £10mil funding gap between available resources and the cost of supporting all those who contact Race Crisis Centres. If you want to help close that gap, then you can donate here: rapecrisis.org.uk/supportus.php
(16/27) All I’ve ever wanted to do is use my story to create something positive. In the very least I want to raise awareness of how fucking IM-POSS-I-BLE it is for even the most enabled survivor to access support or justice. Naturally my overall aim is to actively tackle it.
(17/27) I’ve met with my local MP, @DrRosena, who was kind & proactive and put forward written questions to the Secretaries of State for Health and Justice about the current lack of support facing survivors of sexual violence.
(18/27) The @MoJGovUK responded with:
(19/27) That sounds great, right? So… why are waiting lists still closed? @DavidGauke @Jeremy_Hunt any ideas??? Maybe you could all write to your own MP asking the same. Let’s engage in this democracy schtick. parliament.uk/get-involved/c…
(20/27) So all in all pals, I am fucking exhausted. I don’t know what else I’m supposed to have done to 1) catch my attacker 2) access support and 3) help others access support. Like… please, please tell me what more I can do because…*flails limbs*
(21/27) I don’t want to make myself out a martyr & pretend that I’ve gone through all this alone because I literally have the BEST friends who have helped me more than they’ll ever know. Very few people know the full story but those who do… fuck me I cannot thank them enough
(22/27) AND it looks like something pretty great has come from last week’s meltdown & my work are currently looking into ways they can facilitate my treatment. Which is fucking great. I am SO unbelievably lucky.
(23/27) But that’s the point though, right? I shouldn’t have to be lucky. I am where I am now because of privilege. I’m educated & enabled enough to do all that I’ve done so far (not bigging myself up ‘cause it’s still v little).
(24/27) It shouldn’t be down to my employer to fix me. How many survivors do you think are that fortunate? If I go to a doctor with a broken leg, I expect to be treated. If as a victim of rape I go to a Rape Crisis Centre, *I expect to be fucking treated*. Simple.
(25/27) So. That’s it I guess. Thank you again to literally EVERYBODY in my life & those who have reached out this last week. I have the emotional range of a teaspoon (NAME THAT QUOTE) but...y’know, you’re all alright.
(26/27) Probs gonna hide away from twitter for a wee while because nobody needs a suddenly cathartic Fern tweeting out my actual feelings like this when you’re just trying to find some sweet memes.
(27/27) Thank you.
@SarahChampionMP this thread might be of interest to you and great surname
@vonny_bravo @kateileaver @caitlinmoran @MsCaitSpencer TW so please don't feel obliged to read but might be of interest to you/your circles
@jessphillips TW but please read & share if you think it might do something good
@RapeCrisisEandW @WgtnRapeCrisis @Agenda_alliance @WEP_UK @SophieRunning @catherine_mayer please read & get in touch if interested in working/continuing working with me on this
@glosswitch just saw your thread on sexual assault & thought my own might be of interest to you/your work. Please consider sharing with those it might help/those who can help
@BarristerSecret @JolyonMaugham if anybody within your circles would be interested in working with me on contents of this thread then please share and get in touch
@SolaceWomensAid this thread might be of interest to you. Would be super keen to work more closely with you to combat the issues discussed.
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