National Stalking Awareness Week #NSAW16

This week was National Stalking Awareness week and what an incredible week it’s been.

Since my journey as a stalking victim started over 12 years ago, this has been an overwhelming week of support for stalking victims and I honestly cannot believe how far we have come, although the journey still has a long way to go. I remember in those days how alone I was and how no one understood or knew what being stalked was like. Thanks to the courage of so many victims, our voices have been heard, loud and clear on the countless radio and TV interviews we have done.

But as the week draws to a close and the next news item takes our place, what do we now have to do to ensure that my story, Lily Allen’s story, Tracey Morgan’s ,Ann Mould’s, Sam Taylor’s, Rana Faruqui’s, Clare Bernal’s and Jane Clough’s and the many others, are not quickly forgotten? What do we do to make sure that lessons are learnt and improvements are made to help improve the journey to justice, support and protection for ALL stalking victims?

I know that our campaigns for a Victims’ rights law supported by Digital Trust; tackling stalking through the family and civil courts; pushing for treatment programmes for perpetrators; treatment support for victims and robust training for all agencies on stalking, is an ongoing job and could make a difference. I know others are pushing for tougher sentences and a stalker register and collectively, we are trying our hardest to protect stalking victims.

Together we hope that the Police will recognise it when a victim makes it’s first complaint. The Police will signpost them to available, local support and work hard on the victim’s behalf to bring their perpetrators to justice. The CPS will apply the stalking legislation and involve the victim in the process and that the sentences given will reflect the need for rehabilation and treatment. We want a victim to get support and protection and feel that the justice system served them well.

So with that in mind, let’s aim that by next awareness week in 2017, when the Suzy Lamplugh Trust do their next FOI requests, we will see just how far we have come and that together, we all played a part in saving and supporting so many more victims.

To everyone this week, well done for your incredible work. From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU.

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