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Our statement on the sentencing of Sarah Everard's perpetrator

30 Sep 2021

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Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Sarah Everard today, and the family and friends of all the women murdered by men who will be experiencing unimaginable pain.

The appalling death of Sarah Everard was a sexually violent kidnap, rape and murder, and we welcome the whole life sentence meted out to her perpetrator.

However, no sentence can be capable of reflecting the harms caused to Sarah.

We have seen so many reports and recommendations that criticise the processes in the criminal justice system that fail to keep women and girls safe, but this case also demonstrates the culture of misogyny and sexism that exists within the police. There will of course need to be an inquiry into the specific abuse of power that we have seen here, but we are past the time for more reports making the same recommendations that we have heard already. We are past the time of simply acknowledging the severity of male violence against women and girls.

We must see action. We all know that radical changes in both culture and practice, not only in the police but across society, must now be made in order to prioritise addressing violence against women and girls.

Those in power must take responsibility for making the changes needed to address male violence.

This sentencing comes at a time when our nation is mourning, rocked by the senseless killing of yet another young woman, Sabina Nessa. Justice can only be achieved when all women and girls are safe.