Busting myths around rape

As part of the continued focus on the perception of rape the States of Jersey Police is releasing its 2nd Myth a Month video; this time concentrating on the image of a rapist and who people believe them to be.

Every month the Force is challenging another common myth around the topic of rape and sexual violence and replacing it with what the real picture is.

The initiative is part of the Force’s long term rape campaign entitled “Ask. Listen. Respect” which aims to educate the public, as well as encouraging victims to come forward.

The 2nd month centres around the myth -

A rapist is likely to be a stranger who attacks someone in a dark alley.

When in fact -

- The majority of rapes are committed by people who know and trust each other.

- They could be friends, partners, family members or know each other from school, college or work

Detective Sergeant Louise Clayson, who works within the Criminal

Investigation Department said: ‘One of the most common myths surrounding rape is that it is an act committed randomly by a stranger who is lurking in the bushes or in a dark ally. Statistically however most victims are raped by people they know.

‘The stranger rape myth is based on our societal need to distance ourselves from rapists. It is much more comfortable for us to call them strangers than the darker truth of sexual violence: that the rapists are often people we trust - our friends, acquaintances or family.’

To try and prevent rape, we need to be honest about the realities of it. Many of us have created a cloud of myth surrounding rape to protect ourselves from some uncomfortable truths. Throughout the course of the year we will continue our work to challenge these age old taboos and get people talking about the subject which in the past has been difficult to discuss.’


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