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.




Landmark Domestic Violence Case Settled

International News

$1million awarded to family of California woman shot dead by her husband - 18 calls to Sheriff's Dept never resulted in arrest

WOMENSENEWS 19 June 2002  By Rebecca Vesely - WEnews correspondent

SAN FRANCISCO (WOMENSENEWS)--A ground-breaking domestic violence case was settled out of court for $1 million Tuesday, marking the first time that monetary damages have been awarded by an American law enforcement agency to the family of a domestic violence victim, advocates said.

Maria Teresa Macias, 36, was shot to death by her estranged husband Avelino Macias in 1996 in Sonoma, Calif., before he turned the gun on himself. In the months leading up to her death, she contacted the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department at least 18 times seeking protection from her increasingly abusive husband. Despite at least eight violations of a restraining order for stalking, Avelino Macias was never arrested or detained.

Teresa Macias’ three children and her mother, Sara Hernandez, who was wounded in the slaying, had sought $15 million in damages from the sheriff’s department for allegedly violating her civil rights to equal protection under the law.
The settlement was announced on the second day of testimony in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, after Hernandez testified that Avelino Macias would burn Teresa Macias with cigarettes and, despite the restraining order, once followed her to a house where she worked as a cleaner and raped her.

Judge Susan Illston ordered settlement talks a week before the trial began, but the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors didn’t approve the $1 million sum until Tuesday. Lawyers for Sonoma County said the settlement did not include any admission of wrongdoing. . . .

Copyright 2002 Women’s Enews.