This is the joint website of  Women Against Rape and Black Women's Rape Action Project. Both organisations are based on self-help and provide support, legal information and advocacy. We campaign for justice and protection for all women and girls, including asylum seekers, who have suffered sexual, domestic and/or racist violence.

WAR was founded in 1976. It has won changes in the law, such as making rape in marriage a crime, set legal precedents and achieved compensation for many women. BWRAP was founded in 1991. It focuses on getting justice for women of colour, bringing out the particular discrimination they face. It has prevented the deportation of many rape survivors. Both organisations are multiracial.

 

 

 

Women Against Rape

Grassroots multi-racial women's group founded in 1976. Offers counselling, support, legal advocacy and information to women and girls who have been raped or sexually assaulted.

WAR has provided extra support

Success story

“WAR has provided extra support especially talking to my legal representative when they have neglected my asylum claim, including pointing out a letter form the home office threatening me with deportation which had been ignored by my representative. I could not find help like this from any other organisation, but this was crucial for me. Lawyers can be intimidating if you have a language barrier but having a group like WAR can be of great help and personally I have benefited from this. Also WAR has provided letters of support, which have been very crucial in my immigration case and without such letter I wouldn’t have been able to put down my ordeal in writing.

Through this organisation I have met and made women friends from my own country and other parts of the world who share the same pain and traumas. It was very important for me to meet other black women because the other groups were mainly of white women."

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Testimony from a Ugandan woman who won her asylum claim with WAR's help

Success story

I am Ugandan by nationality. I left my country due to political reasons i.e. I was raped, beaten and I was psychologicallyeduardo_martino.jpg affected because I was separated from my son and partner in Uganda. I suffered from depression, which wasn’t easy at all.

I was introduced to WAR through my solicitor and they’ve helped me a lot to recover from my experiences which I am grateful of, through counselling which I do every week. They got me housing in a hostel. I really don’t know what I would have done without them because I didn’t get any help from anyone else.

Now I have refugee status and I am studying and getting my life together.”

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Asylum from Rape Bulletin Spring 2009

Bulletin

Winning compensation for unlawful detention of rape survivor

image001.jpgYou may have heard about the case of Ms PB who was recently awarded £38,000 for unlawful detention including £6000 “aggravated damages”  for the suffering caused to her as a victim of rape and other torture. Ms PB first spoke about the rape she suffered to her first lawyer, who told her not to raise it in court. It was not until she read the material we sent her, including WAR's Rights Sheet for Rape Survivors Seeking Asylum, and spoke to one of our volunteers, that she felt able to speak about it again. Our rota of volunteers continues to be a life-line for women in Yarl’s Wood who can get help nowhere else. For many women it has been the only way they have found the courage to speak about rape.

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Press Statement - Journalist Giuliana Sgrena kidnapped

International News

Read about Giuliana Sgrena in WeNews, Feb 05
Letter to the Guardian, 19 Feb
Statement to the media , 5 Feb 

PRESS STATEMENT FROM BLACK WOMEN'S RAPE ACTION PROJECT & WOMEN AGAINST RAPE

On International Women's Day, we demand justice for Giuliana Sgrena and the Iraqi women raped and killed by US troops.

We have just found out that the US troops who shot Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena - and killed Nicola Caliperi whose sacrifice saved her life - immediately after her release from kidnap, were from a military unit under investigation last year for raping Iraqi women, according to US army documents. Ms Sgrena had published in her paper testimonies of Iraqi women ex-prisoners who had been raped and sexually abused in Abu Ghraib, and other prisons.

Today, on International Women's Day, the Guardian published correspondent Suzanne Goldenberg's report on the 3rd Infantry Brigade exposing that:

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Woman wins appeal against compensation cut made because she had been drinking

Rape victim's victory ends blame shame

by LOUISE NOUSRATPOUR, Morning Star, 12 August 2008

RAPE victim campaigners demanded changes in the law on Tuesday to stop "old and sexist prejudices" getting in the way of justice after a woman won an appeal against a compensation cut made because she had been drinking.

The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) admitted on Tuesday that, in the past year, around 14 women had been told that they would receive lower levels of compensation due to alcohol consumption.

But one unnamed woman, who believes that she was raped four years ago after having her drink spiked, successfully overturned a decision by the CICA to cut her compensation because she had been drinking "excessively."

She said that being told that the already meagre standard award of £11,000 would be reduced by 25 per cent "felt like a slap in the face."

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'Rape victim told to show duvet to police' Independent, 2 Oct 08

In the Media
Independent
'Insensitive' treatment of teenager highlights low conviction rates
By Robert Verkaik, Law Editor, Independent
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Met Police accused of protecting staff against rape allegations, Times Online Jan 09

In the Media

The Times
January 10, 2009
Metropolitan Police accused of protecting staff against rape allegations
Michael Gillard

The Metropolitan Police was accused last night of shielding officers against accusations of rape after it emerged that dozens of complaints had not resulted in a single conviction over the past five years.
The figures, obtained by The Times, also show that since 2000 only 1 per cent of all public complaints of rape and sexual assault against Met staff were upheld by an internal police investigation.
Even then, a quarter of those who faced a disciplinary board were allowed to resign before any hearing and with police pension intact.

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One in three people blame women for being raped, finds Amnesty survey

In the Media

WAR and women in our network gave substantial interviews on this issue on 21 November 2005 on:

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Submissions from BWRAP and WAR to Harriet Harman Minister for Women Consultation on Priorities, 07

Resource

Responses to the Women's National Commission on Priorities for the Ministers for Women

See the file attachment below to read BWRAP's submission (pdf file)

WAR Submission:

From Women Against Rape

Women’s National Commission Consultation on “Priorities for the Ministers for Women”
Priority 2: TACKLING VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND IMPROVING THE WAY WE DEAL WITH WOMEN WHO COMMIT CRIMES

 

Question 1

What, in your view, is the top issue to be addressed under this priority?

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Two women raped at knifepoint win £5,000, but Appeal Panel member says rape is not the same for prostitutes

Success story

In 1995 two women won the first private prosecution for rape, assisted by the English Collective of Prostitutes, Legal Action for Women and WAR. They were raped by the same client on different occasions. He got 14 years in prison, reduced to 11 on appeal. In court the defence accused them of inventing the rape in order to claim compensation (a common tactic, sometimes thrown even at women who never apply for compensation). They had intitially been refused compensation for delay in reporting and non-cooperation with the police, but when the man was convicted, the CICA heard an appeal. They went before a Panel of three male QCs, represented by WAR. Although the Panel had already decided to grant an award they commented that there was a question as to whether prostitutes were entitled to the same amount as other women.

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