Compass Centre receives almost 200 submissions to new #SaferShetland campaign against sexual harassment & intimate image abuse
Following on from #WisToo, The Compass Centre, also known as Shetland Rape Crisis, has curated a digital and print awareness-raising project focused on experiences of sexual harassment and intimate image abuse in Shetland.
To ensure the campaign was informed by realistic concerns in the community, the charity invited folk to make anonymous submissions reflecting on their experiences of sexual harassment and intimate image abuse in Shetland. Over the four-week submission period, it received almost 200 first-hand accounts.
Ellie Ratter, Prevention and Activism Worker at the Compass Centre, said: “190 submissions were collected over the submission period - a truly astonishing number which shows the extent of the impact sexual harassment and intimate image abuse has on people in Shetland. We are grateful to everyone who felt they could share their story with us as part of this campaign.”
Submissions were gathered with informed consent through an anonymous Google Doc with the opportunity to retract or change submissions up to a week after the closing date. The submissions were then carefully looked through to ensure that anonymity and confidentiality were upheld.
A few quotes were selected to appear as part of the printed poster campaign which will appear on buses, ferries and public spaces across the isles, and all submissions are published in a digital document on The Compass Centre’s website. Some online submissions mention specific locations and events in Shetland where contributors to the campaign say these things were done to them. The integrity of contributor’s own words has been maintained as far as possible and the contents within this document reflect the submissions received only.
Ellie added: “Many submissions stressed that “it does happen here” as a key message they wanted to get across in sharing their experiences. With the volume of submissions and the breadth of experiences shared, we can no longer sweep this behaviour under the carpet and I’d like to invite folk to really engage the campaign with an open mind and join wis in spikking oot against sexual harassment and intimate image abuse in Shetland.”
Lisa Ward, Service Manager, further explained the purpose of the campaign as the charity approaches the annual 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence: “Sexual harassment and intimate image abuse are behaviours informed by a wider set of cultural values that enable other forms of sexual violence such as assault, abuse and rape. Anyone may be subject to sexual violence, and this is clear from the wide range of experiences, identities and backgrounds shared by contributors to the campaign, but sexual harm and violence are not an inevitability – they are preventable.
“At The Compass Centre, we recognise that sexual violence and harm happens in all places and contexts, and that tackling it takes a collective response. We hope that Shetlanders’ brave submissions to this campaign will contribute to the wider community continuing to work together towards a making our islands a safer place to live, work and socialise for all.”
What is Sexual Harassment?
Sexual harassment is any words or actions of a sexual nature that are not wanted or agreed to. It may include, but is not limited to: cat-calling / wolf-whistling / other street harassment, unwanted comments of a sexual nature, unwelcome sexual advances, and unwelcome comments based on your gender and/or sexuality. Sexual harassment can occur in person, digitally, or even over the phone.
What is Intimate Image Abuse?
Intimate image abuse consists of intimate images (photos, video, and/or audio recordings) of you being shared without your consent, or threats to share these. This may include, but is not limited to: intimate images that are originally sent with consent but then further shared and/or kept without consent, intimate images taken without your knowledge or consent, and threats to create and/or share intimate images if you do not comply with the perpetrator’s wishes. The sharing of intimate images often forms a part of wider abuse and is sometimes known colloquially as “revenge porn.”
The linked document [link to campaign on website here for press release] contains descriptions of sexual violence (including harassment, assault, abuse, and rape) which have occurred in Shetland.
Some submissions mention specific locations and events in Shetland where contributors to the campaign say these things were done to them. These accounts may be challenging to read and at times may feel confronting.
The integrity of contributor’s own words has been maintained as far as possible and the contents within this document reflect the submissions received only.If you have been affected by this and need help, please contact:
Compass Centre | Monday-Thursday 9am-1:30pm Tel 01595 747 174 | Email: email@example.com
Rape Crisis Scotland Helpline | 6pm – Midnight Daily Tel 0800 01 02 03 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Childline | 9am-Midnight Daily Tel 0800 1111
Revenge Porn Helpline | Monday-Friday 10am-4pm Tel 0345 6000 459 | Email: email@example.com
View the full document of submissions on the Compass Centre website: www.compasscentre.org/campaigns-activism-transport