When the bodies of womxn and girls are commodified – the value of their humanity is lost and the erasure of their experiences and lives are easily done. This devaluing becomes the common thread that holds intact the cycle of violence. Many survivors/victims do not report because of the fear of not being believed, being blamed or held responsible for their abuse or the fear of shame that somehow, they brought this upon themselves.
Or even more a demoralising is that they know their perpetrator. Statistics reveal that most perpetrators of violence against womxn are people the victims know. The person perpetrating the violence knows that in many cases, that community members will not speak out against him. Should that person be arrested, the inefficiencies within policing response means that he will probably go free. The court process which is gruelling for many survivors/victims and their families lead to some eventually letting it go.
The person perpetrating the violence knows that in many cases, that community members will not speak out against him.
The case may be newsworthy for a while with outrage, but after a few weeks it is forgotten. Thus, through a broken justice response and silence of community because of fear or apathy the case becomes lost and the life of that woman or girl forgotten, most cases go unreported. Because she was not someone important, or in a position of power, privilege and influence she can easily be forgotten. But let us choose to remember the lives lost to gender based violence, let us say no to forgetting and demand justice for every woman and child who has fallen. Let us demand the justice system to deliver the promise of a justice system that is just and policing that protects and believes victims/survivors.