The shocking murders of Sarah Everard , Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman have rightly refocussed attention on the extent of harassment , abuse and violence towards women in our society. It is not surprising that many women feel unsafe and unsupported by the criminal justice system when fewer than 1 in 60 rapes lead to a criminal charge .
This week, the Law Commission published a report in which we recommend that government introduce a new offence of “stirring up hatred” on the basis of sex or gender. Stirring up hatred offences are serious offences that criminalise conduct that is intended or likely to cause others to hate entire groups; frequent targets include Jews or Asian people.
This new offence will target dangerously misogynistic extremist “incel” content – such as advocating rape as a response to sexual rejection – that has been identified by the Commission for Countering Extremism as an emerging threat in the UK.
This recommendation follows our recent recommendations to criminalise rape threats and cyberflashing – the unsolicited sending of sexual images using digital technology – and our upcoming review of the use of evidence in rape and sexual offence trials. This work, together with our ongoing review of the taking, making and sharing of intimate images without consent, will close legal loopholes and strengthen the criminal response to abuse and harassment of women.
Read the full article from The Independent below: