I designed this infographic for the YWCA Canada almost 3 years ago, and no matter how many times I read the statistics, they never lose their effect.
Two days ago, former radio-host Jian Ghomeshi was acquitted of all charges of sexual assault and choking to overcome resistance. He is walking away with a $100,000 slap on the wrist.
As early as 2010, stories about Gomeshi sexually harassing colleagues, interviewees, and other women began to surface and snowballed until he was fired from the CBC and turned himself in to the police in late 2014.
His trial began on February 1, 2016 and lasted eight days. Two days ago, on March 24th, the verdict was announced and he was acquitted of all charges.
Justice William Horkins said the verdict didn’t mean “these events never happened,” only that the court can’t be certain of “the reliability or sincerity of these complainants.”
Once again, the stories of sexual assault victims are dismissed, their voices silenced, and justice denied.
Once in awhile, I’m afraid walking home at night or when the night bus is filled with intoxicated young men. Every young woman is afraid sometimes. But now that fear lingers in the daytime, even when I feel safe, because I know the Canadian justice system fails sexual assault victims 99.7% of the time.
I will not let fear control my life, but I will believe survivors.
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