This page is constantly being updated and added to through consultation with women and girls we work with. It is in the early stages of development but you will currently find information here about what sexual and domestic abuse are and the commonly believed myths that exist around these crimes against women and girls. If there is information you would like us to include please do not hesitate to contact us.
What is Sexual Violence?
"Any sexual act, attempt to obtain a sexual act, unwanted sexual comments or advances, or acts to traffic women's sexuality, using coercion, threats of harm, or physical force, by any person regardless of their relationship to the victim, in any setting, including but not limited to home and work." (World Health Organisation 2004)
Sexual Violence includes: -
Sexual Harrassment and Stalking
Childhood Sexual Abuse
Harmful Traditional Practices including child marriage, forced marriage and female genital mutilation
Pornograghy including:- Being coerced or forced to do sexual things you didn't want to do; Being forced to pose for sexual pictures or films; Someone showing you sexual pictures/films you didn't want to look at; Being made to watch people having sex against your will.
If you have been raped or sexually abused or are supporting someone else who has, you can contact WRSAC for help and information. It doesn't matter whether this happened recently or a long time ago. You can phone our helpline to speak to someone in confidence.
What is Domestic Abuse?
The Government, in the Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Act 2004, defines domestic abuse as ‘any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse (psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional) between adults who are, or have been intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender or sexual orientation’. Family members includes mother, father, son, daughter, brother, sister, and grandparents, whether directly related, in-laws or stepfamily.
National charity Women's Aid define domestic abuse as physical, sexual, psychological or financial violence that takes place within an intimate or family-type relationship and that forms a pattern of coercive and controlling behaviour. This can include forced marriage and so called honour-crimes. Domestic abuse may include a range of abusive behaviours, not all of which are in themselves inherently violent.
Anyone can experience domestic abuse - it can happen in all kinds of relationships, regardless of age, race, sex, sexuality, disability, wealth, gender identity and lifestyle. It is rarely a one-off event. Physical and sexual abuse tends to get more severe and happen more often over time. Domestic abuse can affect men in heterosexual or same-sex relationships.
If you have been the victim of domestic abuse or are supporting someone else who has, you can contact WRSAC for help and information. It doesn't matter whether this happened recently or a long time ago. You can phone the Women's Domestic Violence Support Network and speak to someone in confidence.
If you or your children are in immediate danger PLEASE CALL 999 and ask for the police emergency service.