This is the joint website of  Women Against Rape and Black Women's Rape Action Project. Both organisations are based on self-help and provide support, legal information and advocacy. We campaign for justice and protection for all women and girls, including asylum seekers, who have suffered sexual, domestic and/or racist violence.

WAR was founded in 1976. It has won changes in the law, such as making rape in marriage a crime, set legal precedents and achieved compensation for many women. BWRAP was founded in 1991. It focuses on getting justice for women of colour, bringing out the particular discrimination they face. It has prevented the deportation of many rape survivors. Both organisations are multiracial.

 

 

 

Demanding Justice and protection from the Police and CPS

'My daughter has seen her rapist several times... He just grins at her'

In the Media

Evening Standard, Viv Groskop, 26 November 2010

Taking a stand: Sally Freeman (not her real name) is angry that the police didn’t do more to convict her daughter’s rapist

It's back in the news,” sighs Sally Freeman. “Women are still having to go and complain.”

Freeman has spent the past four years campaigning to raise awareness of the police's incompetent treatment of rape cases.

As the Evening Standard reported this month, three officers from the Met's “Sapphire” sex crimes unit face possible prosecution over allegations that part of a victim's statement was fabricated.

Freeman's interest is personal — she has watched her 20-year-old daughter's life be virtually destroyed in the wake of a rape case where a conviction was not secured.

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Reporting sex attack to police was the beginning of a new ordeal, says victim

In the Media

The Times, Analysis Fiona Hamilton

Last updated September 15 2010 12:01AM

For Anushka, being raped by a former partner was an “intrusion of everything”, she said. “It isn’t just unwanted sex, it’s a complete invasion of your mind, your body, your soul. It destroys you for a long time. You have no trust, you don’t want a relationship.”

When she went to the police to report the assault, believing that she had a clear-cut case, she could have hardly believed that her ordeal was about to get worse. “They don’t treat you with any care at all, I was distraught,” the 48-year-old told The Times.

She felt completely let down by the justice system because the police did not pay enough attention to her case.

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Rape reform is shelved

In the Media

The Times
News

Fiona Hamilton London Correspondent

September 14 2010 10:37PM

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The Defence Case

Court report – the Defence case

DS Wood was recalled to the witness box to answer the questions he was unable to answer in previous days. He confirmed that:
- Vaginal swabs had not been tested for lubricant (although Mrs Sherwood had always said the rapist used a condom).
- Mrs Sherwood had not been seen “vigorously hitting herself” in the vagina in order to cause injury, as claimed by the prosecutor, but that two officers claimed to have seen her “rubbing herself”.

Mrs Sherwood later explained that she had tried to shift her hips as she was numb on the cold ground and that an officer had pulled her legs straight telling her to stay still. She emphatically denied injuring herself.

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Report of the trial of Mrs Gail Sherwood in Bristol Crown Court

There seems to be an increasing trend to prosecute women who reported rape and were not believed by police.  On 8 January 2010 Mrs Gail Sherwood was put on trial in Bristol Crown Court accused of making false allegations.  She has had WAR’s support for nearly two years.

We are concerned that the trial should be accurately reported as the media coverage of such cases is often biased and sensational. So far newspapers have only mentioned the prosecution’s arguments, sometimes inaccurately. The defence begins on Monday 1 February and we hope that the media will present what Mrs Sherwood and her witnesses say.
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Taxi rapes case lays police failures bare

In the Media

John Worboys's victims were let down by a careless and prejudiced police investigation. It's an all too familiar story

Lisa Longstaff
Comment is Free guardian.co.uk Wednesday 20 January 2010

DSC04318LisaGDN.JPGThe young victim of convicted rapist John Worboys said it all: "If something like this had happened in a private business, people would have been sacked. I just do not see how these people can carry on in the police."

The report from the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) on what went wrong with the Worboys police investigation is once again a catalogue of carelessness and prejudice: evidence not gathered, witnesses not interviewed and, most importantly, bias against victims.

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Asylum from Rape Bulletin Winter 2010

Bulletin

image002.jpgLandmark compensation for torture victim and her family

A mother and her five children have won a precedent-setting, six figure compensation award from the Home Office for abuse and injuries sustained during deportation to Uganda in 2006.

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Retaining DNA won't get rid of rape

In the Media

We are told retaining DNA samples helps catch rapists - but rape survivors' pain should not be manipulated to attack civil liberties

Guardian.co.uk Comment is Free, Friday 13 November 2009 12.30 GMT

The Home Office has had to reduce the time the police hold the DNA of people not convicted of any crime. But six years is still unacceptably long and it is still unclear how many people's DNA will be kept indefinitely.

We are told that retaining samples helps catch rapists and murderers. But no reliable figures exist on how many violent criminals cleared of one offence were later convicted through DNA.

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Good news and appeal

Dear Friends,

We are pleased to announce that on Tuesday we helped a woman in our network win £10,200 compensation. She had suffered a particularly prolonged and horrific rape but had been denied any award because she was a heroin user at the time she was raped. We represented her at a compensation appeal hearing and are delighted she has finally won some justice.

This follows a very busy period. Following the scandalous Worboys, Reid and Southwark cases this summer, we met with the Director of Public Prosecutions (head of the CPS) and senior officers setting up the new London-wide police teams that have taken over from Sapphire. We told them what changes were needed to improve investigations and prosecutions, and two survivors in our group illustrated the problems by describing their own recent experiences. All were interested and respectful, but we wait to see if there is real change in practice.

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