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NBBC support the #NOMEANSNO campaign that raises awareness around sexual abuse and consent

Published on Monday, 10th February 2020

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Nuneaton and Bedworth Safer Communities Partnership (NABSCOP) is running the #NOMEANSNO campaign for the third year from 10 – 15 February.

The Borough Council are leading the campaign in partnership with Warwickshire Police and a number of charitable organisations.

The aim of the campaign is to raise awareness around the subject of sexual consent, the reporting of offences as well as highlighting issues of sexual violence.

#NOMEANSNO is a message that encourages people to have the confidence to say no and report sexual offences. The campaign also makes a stern point that consent has to be given and should never be assumed, otherwise guilty parties involved will have to face the consequences.

NBBC, NABSCOP and our partner agencies also want to ensure the campaign highlights that ‘no means no’ in any circumstances. How someone chooses to dress for example is not a prompt to engage in sexual activity if they have not given verbal consent.

Taking advantage of someone when they are under the influence of drugs or alcohol is also a crime. An individual may not be able to give clear consent whilst intoxicated, therefore taking advantage of this increased vulnerability is a sexual offence.

Cllr Chris Watkins, Portfolio Holder for Housing and Communities said:

Raising awareness for sexual abuse and consent are vital in order to protect and keep people safe. Educating others on these issues especially young people through this campaign will contribute to creating a safer society within the Borough.

“We are also working with local pubs, clubs and Taxis to display the message of this campaign, as it’s important for people to know that there is support and services available for those who need it. We hope this will encourage more people to speak up if they have been affected by any of these issues.

Superintendent Daf Goddard from Warwickshire Police said:

We are pleased to support the #NOMEANSNO campaign, which plays a valuable role in raising public awareness around consent and sexual offences within North Warwickshire. It also supports our aim of making Nuneaton and Bedworth a safer place for residents and visitors.

“Rape and sexual assaults are extremely serious offences and those who commit them could face a life sentence. These offences will not be tolerated on any level within Warwickshire and I’m pleased that our partners, together with local town establishments, are working together to raise awareness and highlight the consequences.

"We will help and support anyone who has been a victim of sexual abuse and would encourage any offence to be reported, regardless of when it took place. Any reports will be thoroughly investigated and victims will be supported by specially trained officers and dedicated independent advisors throughout the process.”

There are a host of support agencies available across Warwickshire for anyone who has been a victim and it is important to take this opportunity to highlight that approaching the police is not a victim's only option.

If you have been a victim of a sexual offence and you don't want to come forward to the police, you can also contact the Blue Sky Sexual Assault Referral Centre located at George Eliot Hospital in Nuneaton.

The centre provides access to emergency medical treatment, emotional support and referrals to Independent Sexual Violence Advisors (ISVA) for anyone from Coventry or Warwickshire who has been sexually assaulted. You can contact them on 0800 970 0370 or visit their website www.blueskycentre.org.uk.

We also have a list of other useful contacts who can provide support and this can be found on our website here.

Please help us to spread the #NOMEANSNO message by following @NBBC on Twitter and sharing our posts during campaign week.