SlutWalk Perth Media Release: March and Rally November 16 11am

8 November 2013
SlutWalk, Perth, WA
slutwalk@gmail.com
www.facebook.com/SlutWalkPerth

sltwlk perth
Asserting the innocence of those who are sexually assaulted.  It is always the perpetrator’s responsibility.

 MEDIA RELEASE 

On November 16 SlutWalk Perth and their supporters with gather at Stirling Gardens at 11am and walk through the streets of Perth to Russell Square in a protest against rape.

SlutWalk is a global movement that began in Toronto, Canada, in 2011.  The messages of SlutWalk resonate with the community now more than ever.  We are raising awareness and educating the public about the unfairness of the way criminal justice system consistently lets down victims of sex crimes.  The poor penalties given to sex offenders has always been problematic, with victims penalised more than the offenders, and was evidenced in recent high profile ADFA scandals amongst others.  Rape is the only crime where the victim is put on trial, and shamed and blamed.

Whether it be the lenient penalties given to Jill Meagher’s killer after raping 6 sex workers, which enabled him back on the streets so quickly, the “Roast Busters” in Auckland continuing to gang rape and vilify their victims for years with impunity, or the gang rapes in India, Steubenville, and Maryland in America; there is an overwhelming message being sent to rapists:  be careful “who” you rape. SlutWalk believes that the penalty for committing sex offences should not be based on the perceived morals of the victims. We are fighting for our voices to be heard, to say that no-one ever “asks for it”.  No-one deserves to be raped.

SlutWalk acknowledges the disproportionate level of sexual violence perpetrated against women and girls by men, but also acknowledges that many men are also victims of sex crimes, usually perpetrated by men.

We stand together to welcome all people to send a clear message to our community and society, to police and politicians, and to the judiciary: Stop Victim Blaming.

Some members of the organising team along with many supporters have experienced sexual assault.  Ms Castieau, founder of SlutWalk Perth said, “I think the real impact of this movement is demonstrated by how strongly women and men feel globally about this issue; because for many of us participating, we have been both shamed and blamed.”

This year’s SlutWalk event looks to be the biggest held in Perth to date. SlutWalk Tucson is holding their march and rally on the same day, showing how global this movement has become. Since May 2011 SlutWalk Perth has been gaining momentum and on November 16 around 300-500 people are expected to attend the event.

This year includes a variety of speakers: including Bec Leighton, a representative from People for Sex Workers Rights WA; Beth Castieau, Social Worker and founder of SlutWalk Perth; Lori will be giving a survivor speech, and Bec Davies, another prominent Perth activist, will also be speaking at the rally.

The event’s MC is Shrusti Tripathy.  Tripathy has worked with SlutWalk Singapore and Kolkata giving her a valuable insight into the movement and will discuss the history of SlutWalk and its international origins. “Rape culture is similar everywhere” says Shrusti, “even if it varies in its manner of perpetuation, the old adage that boys will be boys and therefore, girls need to ‘protect themselves’ from being raped. With the crux of the attitude being the same everywhere, it’s no wonder that SlutWalk resonated with many people due to its open armed welcome to all genders, races and sexualities who had something to say or wanted to listen”.

  • Only 19% of sexual offences are reported to the police (SARC).
  • In 8 out of 10 cases the victim knows the perpetrator (SARC)
  • In Australia during 2010, 25% of those sexually assaulted were aged between 10 – 14 years old (ABS 2010).
  • 1 in 3 girls and 1 in 5 boys have been the victims of childhood sexual assault (ABS)

Please join SlutWalk Perth from 11am at Stirling Gardens on November 16. Face painting and sign making will be available prior to the march commencing and speeches will take place at the rally in Russell Square.

For more information please contact Beth Castieau on slutwalk@gmail.com

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