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 (Police and CPS)

Name and shame
Name and shame
Everyone's responsibility
Everyone's responsibility

Only 4% of reported rapes end in conviction.
According to the latest HMIC report (2015) for England & Wales reports of rape have risen dramatically:
a) In 2010 -11 there were 9,856 reported rapes.
b) In 2014-15 nearly 20,000 rapes were recorded.
c) Police no-crimed on average 10% of reports, ie they were not recorded. They have recently been relabelled cancelled or transferred crimes.
d) In 2014-15, only 6,159 of the reports were referred to the CPS (compared to 8,130 in 2010-11).  
e) Only 12% of recorded adult rapes led to a charge or summons in 2014-15. The rate is almost double when the victim is a child, 23%.
f) Only about 4% of reported cases were prosecuted.
g) two to three women a week are murdered by partners or ex-partners. The conviction rate for domestic violence is similar to that for rape.

With the conviction rate so low all survivors of sexual violence are up against entrenched institutional sexism from the legal, immigration and compensation authorities. We are disbelieved and treated disrespectfully throughout the legal process, including when:
• Evidence is not gathered or presented properly by the police or the Crown Prosecution Service – beginning with the woman’s statement to the police.
• Women are pressed to withdraw, or find their case was dropped.
• The victim never meets the person presenting her case;
• If the case ever reaches court the woman is put "on trial", and not defended by the prosecuting barrister;
• Rape cases are undermined by widespread sexism, racism and discrimination against women on the basis of occupation, sexual history, medical history or disability, nationality, immigration status, age, class, sexual orientation, relationship to the attacker, criminal record . . .

Rape has been in the media a lot recently because of the Savile and other cases.  

It is a big step forward that the truth about how rape is deprioritised by the police and CPS is finally being acknowledged. We helped a woman win a path breaking £15 000 compensation from the Metropolitan Police for losing evidence in her rape resulting in the man's acquittal.  This happened in Southwark and is a direct result of our work as the girl's mother is part of WAR. Because we refused to be fobbed off with excuses, we won an unusually damning report by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) into the negligent and dysfunctional Sapphire Unit in Southwark, London, which had dealt with her daughter’s rape. We have publicised its findings. In a nutshell, vehicle crime was given a higher priority than rape. Since then, we have had a series of meetings with the heads of the police and prosecution service, and we intend to ensure that they implement their promises of change, so that more women and girls can get protection and justice.

In 2013 the IPCC published a report showing that the Southwark rape unit had a policy in 2009 of forcing women to withdraw their rape allegations.  

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