On just one day in the UK this year, 94 women and 90 children were turned away from refuge [Image: incamerastock/Alamy/Alamy].

Does nobody find this in any way concerning?

The Conservative government is deliberately trying to force abused women and children to stay with their abusers.

And Theresa May’s advisors gagged a survivor of historic child sexual abuse from speaking openly about “very serious allegations about very public figures” – as a result, “nothing was being done about” them.

Is nobody worried that the government of the United Kingdom, far from trying to prevent this vile behaviour, actually seems to be encouraging it?

Hard-fought campaigns for women’s rights are being casually undone. For example, just 15 years ago, women and children were able to escape violence and abuse by fleeing to refuges and then moving into permanent social housing.

Today we work tirelessly just to defend the ground that we won in the years since the first safe houses for women were opened more than 40 years ago: the right to safety, somewhere to flee to when in danger, and a secure home in which to start rebuilding your life.

I am astounded that in 2017 these basic rights are being questioned. But they are… On the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, Women’s Aid has revealed that on just one day in the UK this year, 94 women and 90 children were turned away from refuge.

The government’s proposed supported housing reforms are set to remove refuges’ last secure form of funding, housing benefit, which will only make it worse for women and children trying to escape domestic abuse.

Now only one third of women who need a refuge space can access it. They then leave refuges to join the army of women and children in temporary rooms or flats, waiting for yet another temporary move and at the bottom of the queue. We have a welfare fund, food banks, lists of supporters ready with clothing and baby equipment – but no right to the grants or loans that our welfare system previously had in place.

Source: I work with women facing domestic and sexual violence: it’s devastating to see how much progress is unravelling | Public Leaders Network | The Guardian


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