Poll Confirms Worrying Unchanged Attitudes to Female Rape Victims

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

Today a new poll commissioned by Amnesty International in Northern Ireland, revealed that attitudes as to who is responsible when it comes to violence against women, still puts the blame squarely with the woman. A staggering 46% believed that a woman is partially or totally to blame when it comes to the crimes of rape and sexual assault. 30% of the 700 students surveyed, found that a woman is partially or totally responsible for being raped, if she is wearing ‘sexy revealing clothing’.

Ellen O’Malley-Dunlop, Chief Executive of the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre (DRCC) said: “This poll conducted by Amnesty International unfortunately confirms attitudes we meet every day. Yes we have come a long way since the 70’s and 80’s in Ireland in that we acknowledge that we have a problem in this area. We do provide Rape Crisis Centres, to respond to the needs of the victims in overcoming the trauma of rape and sexual assault. However, attitudes take a lot longer to change and we need to continue to provide preventative measures in order to change these entrenched attitudes.

How can we possibly expect real change if the attitudes are still so stuck in outmoded views of both men and women. How can we expect to get justice in our courts for the courageous victims of these crimes when they come forward and look for justice, when these attitudes still abound?

It is very important to raise awareness about these crimes and to inform people of the services that are in place but we must invest in education at all levels, so that these attitudes are eradicated once and for all and we can emerge into a healthier society”.

For further information please contact:
Ellen O’Malley-Dunlop, CEO – 01 661 4911 / 086 809 9618

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