Nov 24, 2017
The 25th of November is the UN International End Violence against Women Day which raises awareness of the gender-based violence and discrimination that many women face and experience every day.
Violence against women is deeply and historically entrenched into society. The A Hidden History of Women in the East End: The Alternative Jack the Ripper tour’s that launched this month confirm this. The tours – which narrate the untold story of Jack the Ripper’s victims – juxtapose a historical case of violence against women in prostitution with the modern day stories of women who experience violence selling sex for sell for survival in the area today.
Women in prostitution are often seen this way: as different. Women in prostitution often experience even higher levels of risk of discrimination and violence than women on average. The abuse and hate crime directed towards women involved in prostitution is often justified by idea that these women are ‘prostitutes’ not individuals.
Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper, said of the violent rapes and murders he committed “the women I killed were filth – bastard prostitutes who were littering the streets. I was just clearing up the place a bit”. Had he been caught, we imagine the unidentified murdered commonly known as ‘Jack the Ripper’ would have made a similar statement.
These were women who were unworthy and judged. These were women who did not matter. These were women who could be discriminated against and despised. These were women who didn’t count.
We believe women matter. We believe their lives count for something. At Beyond the Streets we are working to provide routes out for women who have experienced violence and sexual exploitation. Our NOvember campaign is raising awareness and funds to fight against sexual exploitation and violence against women. As activists across the world take action today to say no to violence against women, why don’t you join them. We’ve got a few suggestions as to how you can leave your mark.
Share what you’ve learnt through our #NOvemberCampaign blog series and challenge people about the way they view women. One way you can take action in this way is by challenging jokes/humour that are made towards women involved in prostitution.
This #NOvemberCampaign we are trying to raise £18,000 to keep Door of Hope’s outreach to women who are sexually exploited in the east London going for another year. Help us reach our target by giving us a one of gift of £18 or partnering with us by giving regularly.
Tickets for 2017 have now sold out, but we’ve just released new dates for 2018. Book your ticket for a tour in the new year today.