#IBelieveHer: Max Cllifford, Alan Sugar and Believing Survivors Of Sexual Violence

I have just lost what little respect I had left for Alan Sugar.

This evening, Max Clifford, known misogynist and seller of “kiss and tell” stories was arrested for sex offences. As of yet, it remains to be seen if he has been, or is to be, charged.

But I know one thing. A small minority of all allegations of sexual offences are false. Official sources vary, but place these between 2% and 8%. People propagating the myth that these false allegations are a common occurrence silences victims. It’s even more harmful when it’s a myth propagated by well known members of the public.

I can guarantee, there will be survivors of sexual assault and rape following Alan Sugar. Up until this evening, I was one of them. There will be survivors who have reported, and seen their cases result in a conviction. There will be survivors who reported, and didn’t see their case end in a conviction. And there will be people who didn’t report. But for a lot of these survivors, if not all, there is that fear you won’t be believed. Seeing this bullshit from a public figure reminds you of that fear.

It’s how Saville and Smith escaped prosecution. It’s why our prosecution and conviction rates for rape are in need of improvement. And it’s why so many survivors never report.

I stand in solidarity with the survivor(s) who have brought claims against Max Clifford. And I believe them.

 

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