Action: Support Coventry Rape & Sexual Abuse Centre

30Jan09

This morning the Equality and Human Rights Commission issued a strongly worded warning to over 100 councils across the UK threatening legal action against those who continue to provide sufficient rape crisis centres and support for victims of domestic abuse. What better time to pick up a pen and support one rape crisis centre in need, use the template letter below and spare a stamp to make a difference.

The Rt Hon Harriet Harman QC MP
Leader of the House of Commons
London
SW1A 0AA

FAO The Rt Hon Harriet Harman January 2009
Coventry Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre – CRASAC
I am writing to ask you to meet with a representative of CRASAC and their umbrella organization, The Rape Crisis Network to ensure that sexual violence is addressed at a local level, and that vital services for rape and sexual assault victims are able to continue and develop in response to the clear need for support provision for victims.

You will be aware that CRASAC received £37K from the Emergency Fund for Rape Crisis groups that you announced in March 2008. This funding has ensured that the centre won’t close or have to reduce services to victims of sexual violence in this current financial year. However, without urgent long-term support CRASAC will be facing the same funding crisis in 2009 as we did in 2008.

An initiative like the emergency funding raised hope, but even though you made a commitment to work with Rape Crisis (England and Wales) towards a long term sustainable business model for Rape Crisis groups; to date, you have failed to initiate any of those discussions.

Sexual violence has a devastating impact on victims, their families and friends and wider society. The extent of sexual violence is huge, with 300,000 women experiencing rape and serious sexual assault each year, 2,500 rapes in Coventry; and 32% of children, mostly girls, experiencing some form of child sexual abuse. The Government’s Sexual Violence Action Plan (SVAAP) states that sexual violence is ‘both a cause and consequence of gender inequality’, as the perpetrators are overwhelmingly male and most victims are female.

As reported in your Government Sexual Violence Action Plan (SVAAP) ‘each rape costs over £76,000 and the cost of sexual violence to society was £8.5 billion in 2003-4 alone – much of this cost is made up of lost output and costs to the health service resulting in long term health issues faced by victims’. CRASAC had an annual income in 2008 of approximately £290,000 which amounts to £155.83 funding per victim that we support!

I am asking you to accept a meeting from CRASAC and The Rape Crisis Network to proactively support them in their work.

Please contact Sarah Learmonth at CRASAC to discuss a convenient meeting date. Contact details: sarah.learmonth@crasac.org.uk, Mobile: 07776 230258.

Yours sincerely
Check out the Map of Gaps to find out more about Violence Against Women in the UK and to make a difference locally.
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One Response to “Action: Support Coventry Rape & Sexual Abuse Centre”

  1. I’ve just come across this blog site and wanted to thank you for your support.

    Gotta love the internet!!

    Thanks again, Sarah xx



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