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08 July 2015
New post-watershed advert launched to tackle rape

New post-watershed advert launched to tackle rape

A hard-hitting advertising campaign aimed at young men has been launched as part of police efforts to tackle rape.

The advert, which will be broadcast to television viewers after the 9pm watershed as well as in cinemas and online over the next eight months, intends to underline the message that sex without consent is rape. 
 
Police Scotland launched the latest phase of its ‘We Can Stop It’ rape prevention campaign today amid figures showing more than one third of rapes reported in Scotland are carried out by men between the ages of 16 and 27.


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Chief Constable Sir Stephen House (pictured left) said: "The number of people coming forward to report rape is increasing which is a positive sign that victims are becoming more confident in coming forward, knowing their report will be thoroughly investigated.

"But we know that this is an under-reported crime. We want to encourage people to come forward and to report. Let me be very clear, we will listen and we will act. 

“Our ultimate aim though, with our partners, is preventing these crimes in the first place and this campaign contributes to that work."

There were 1,797 rapes recorded during 2014-15, up 91 (5.3 per cent) on the previous year. Almost two-fifths were historic, meaning that they were reported a year or more on from the incident.

Sandy Brindley (pictured right), national co-ordinator of Rape Crisis Scotland, said: “The law is clear - sex without consent is rape, but we need to do much more to increase public awareness around this issue.

“The new advert can play an important part in making sure people, particularly young people, are clear about what rape actually is, and that it can have serious consequences.”

Scotland’s chief constable also met bar staff undergoing training in how to intervene to prevent someone potentially becoming the victim of a sexual assault.

Since late 2013 Scotland’s Violence Reduction Unit (VRU) has been involved in training licensing police officers in how to deliver courses to bar and club staff as well as bouncers.

The rationale is to engage those working in the night-time economy to spot signs of vulnerability and promote discussion of how intervention might be carried out in a safe manner.

Chief Inspector Graham Goulden, bystander trainer at the VRU, said: “We want to make sure society starts to focus their attention on the men who do this rather than focusing on whether a victim had been drinking.  We will never stop this if we continue to focus on victims."

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