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.

 

 

 

What you can do to support Gail Sherwood

On 4th March 2010, Gail Sherwood, a 52-year-old mother of three, was sentenced to two years in prison for falsely claiming she had been harassed and raped by an unknown stranger. Women Against Rape has been supporting Gail for over 18 months and throughout her six-week trial. We are convinced that she is innocent. So are over 70 of her friends and family who wrote to the judge: “We have always found Gail to be kind, intelligent, well-balanced, and above all honest... [She] had no reason to jeopardise her family life with her daughters, her partner, her dogs and her livelihood by making up something that did not happen...”

For more information visit (http://www.womenagainstrape.net/content/defence-case) and read the excellent article published in the Guardian on Friday 5th March 2010 (http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2010/mar/09/gail-sherwood-jailed-campaigners).

Gail is not the only rape victim we have met who has been accused of lying and prosecuted, so we are calling for the police to concentrate on prosecuting rapists rather than women and girls who report rape. Prosecuting women like Gail is putting rape survivors off reporting and allowing rapists to carry on raping. Women in Gloucestershire have also expressed concern about their safety knowing Gail’s rapist was never caught.

Since being in prison, Gail has had a stroke and is recovering slowly. The separation from her family is particularly hard to bear. We have received many emails and phone calls from people offering to help. There are a number of things you can do:

- Sign and circulate our online petition – FREE GAIL SHERWOOD! PROSECUTE RAPISTS NOT VICTIMS (http://www.petitiononline.com/WAR2010/petition.html)

- Write to Gail. It is really important that she knows how much support she has. Please send us any letters you would like us to forward to her.

- Contact WAR with your experiences of reporting rape to the police. Were you disbelieved or encouraged to withdraw your complaint? Were you accused of making a false allegation?

- Send a donation to WAR to help with support costs such as fares to visit Gail. Please address cheques to Women Against Rape and mark on the back 'for Gail Sherwood Fighting Fund'. You can donate online securely via Just Giving at https://secure.justgiving.com/process/whitelabel/default.asp?_whitelabel...

We look forward to hearing from you.

 

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