The sexual abuse and sexual violence awareness week takes place this year from 6th-12th February and we at Equation are fully behind the cause. The week was established to give an opportunity for the general public, statutory and third sector organisations to participate in a discussion about sexual abuse and sexual violence.
The need for the designated period is due to a lack of dialogue on the subject. During the week people raise awareness about sexual abuse and sexual violence and how to prevent it in the UK through putting on events and making sure the subject is talked about on social media. You can find ideas and resources for participating in the discussion too.
Sexual abuse can often go hand in hand with domestic abuse – an issue we are fighting every day in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. To put this into a national perspective, 12% of under 11s, 18% of 11-17s and 24% of 18-24s have been exposed to domestic abuse between adults in their homes during childhood (Source: NSPCC).
While not all of these cases will have involved an element of sexual abuse or violence, there is a definite link between the two as being forced into sexual acts is a key method of controlling or coercive behaviour that can occur in a domestic setting. Our concern is that if there is no discourse concerning these issues they will persist in negatively affecting households across the country.
Local services and support
There are a number of organisations working to support those who have experienced sexual abuse and violence in the local area, such as Nottinghamshire Rape Crisis Centre and the Topaz Centre. If you are experiencing domestic abuse or violence there is help available here.
You can also find help on the dedicated page for the sexual abuse and sexual violence week with a variety of different avenues for those in need.
There are countless events happening across the UK to mark #itsnotok2017 week and you can find an interactive map so you can see what’s happening near you. New events will be added as they are announced and you can find loads of ways to get involved yourself.
You can join the conversation on social media using #itsnotok and follow @itsnotok2017. You can even add a Facebook cover and Twitter banner to your profile to show your support. You can go to a local event and meet like minded people. Or how about organising your own event? Check out suggestions for events or read about past events for inspiration.