Greater Manchester is proudly supporting the first North West Sexual Violence Awareness Week, which takes place from 8-14 November 2021.

Police and Crime Commissioners, local authorities, police services, and sexual assault and abuse services across the North West have come together to raise awareness of sexual violence and the support services available to survivors.

Throughout the week, each area will host their own dedicated activity to raise awareness within their communities. These range from art installations from university students to moments of reflection in the form of vigils, all of which aim to engage local communities and promote the support available to survivors of sexual violence.

In Greater Manchester, universities are hosting events on Wednesday 10 November, including:

  • The University of Manchester is hosting an exhibition to tackle harassment and sexual misconduct across its campuses. There will also be an open panel discussion in the evening between 7pm-8.30pm for those within the University community to ask questions. Book your ticket.
  • Manchester Metropolitan University will be inviting staff and students to sign a pledge board to show their commitment to stamping out sexual harassment and violence in our communities. Several pledge boards will be located at key locations around campus, and staff and students will be encouraged to sign the pledge and take a photo to post on social media.
  • UA92 is hosting a NWSV week stall where students can access Survivor Support Packs, information on specialist support organisations, guidance on reporting and free personal attack alarms.

Bev Hughes, Greater Manchester’s Deputy Mayor for policing, crime, criminal justice and fire, said: “Greater Manchester is proud to support North West Sexual Violence Awareness Week.

“Sexual violence and abuse has a horrific and often long-term impact on victims and survivors. That’s why I’m committed to making sure the right specialist services are available and accessible across the city-region to help victims and survivors cope and recover.

“My hope, through the activity taking place throughout the week, is that more people are encouraged to talk openly about sexual violence and their experiences, whether that be to a friend, family or one of the specialist services available in Greater Manchester.”

According to the World Health Organisation, one in three women endure physical or sexual violence and one in four adolescent girls ages 15-19 who have had a relationship have been subjected to either physical or sexual violence. But it is not just females who are victims.

Approximately 12,000 men (aged 16-59) are raped in the UK every year and more than 70,000 are sexually abused or assaulted.

Police and Crime Commissioners, police forces, local authorities, and NHS England all fund sexual violence support services. These services may vary across localities but together they aim to offer the same level of care no matter where a survivor lives.

From specialist forensic and medical sites called Sexual Assault Referral Centres (SARCs) to aftercare provisions like counselling, group therapy and Independent Sexual Violence Advisors (ISVAs), these services aim to work in unison to give every victim of sexual violence the support they need.

If you or someone you know is a victim of sexual violence you can contact the police direct on 101, or in an emergency call 999.

If you do not wish to contact the police, you can contact Greater Manchester Victims’ Services on 0161 200 1950 or visit gmvictims.org.uk.

To join in with the campaign or find out more information, visit sexualviolencesupport.co.uk


Article Published: 08/11/2021 18:27 PM