Beyond the monster myth: sexual violence and relationships forum
Wednesday 14 October 2015
Premier’s Hall, Parliamentary Annexe
Parliament House, George Street, Brisbane
To register, click here.
Public discussions and attitudes towards sexual violence are often centred around the idea that women are most vulnerable to violent strangers outside the home – what Tom Meagher, who lost his wife Jill to such an attack, refers to as ‘the monster myth’:
“Bayley feeds into a commonly held social myth that most men who commit rape are like him, violent strangers who stalk their victims and strike at the opportune moment. It gives a disproportionate focus to the rarest of rapes, ignoring the catalogue of non-consensual sex happening on a daily basis everywhere on the planet.”
In Australia, 17% of women have been sexually assaulted. Almost 90% of them knew their attacker – a partner, a relative, a friend, or an ex. Not a stranger, or an unknown ‘monster’, but someone close to them.
Many sexual assaults take place within current relationships or are perpetrated by ex-partners, and yet sexual violence is often ignored in discussions around intimate partner or domestic violence. The ‘Not Now, Not Ever’ report from the Special Taskforce on Domestic Violence released earlier this year, while defining intimate partner sexual violence as part of the broader issue of domestic violence, did not offer any indepth discussion of how prevalent the issue is or how to reduce it or better support victims. Women themselves describe the additional stigma and shame attached to being a woman who has been sexually assaulted, in addition to one who has been physically or mentally assaulted by a partner.
Intimate partner sexual assault is under-reported and under-discussed. Join us for a forum on this important issue and hear from experts working in the field of sexual violence and relationships, as part of Sexual Violence Awareness Month this October. All funds raised from this event will go to assisting disadvantaged women to access abortion services in Queensland. In 2014-15, 35% of the Children by Choice financial assistance clients were women experiencing sexual and/or domestic violence. This is an area of need which continues to grow.
This forum will be followed by refreshments, then the Children by Choice AGM. Members and supporters are invited to stay for the AGM; however only members have voting rights at the meeting.
Enquiries about this event can be directed to Amanda Bradley, Children by Choice Coordinator, on 07 3357 9933 (ext 1) or via email at coord[at]childrenbychoice.org.au.
For more information, click here.