Our homes, schools, streets, places of worship, taxis, trains, and many spaces in Black African and Coloured townships are dangerous. The lack of safety in our communities is rooted in a critical lack of resourcing, continuation of spatial apartheid, and poor policing with its roots in the needs of colonial and apartheid economies.
The 2014 Khayelitsha Commission of Inquiry into Police found that “residents of the poorest areas of Cape Town that bore the brunt of apartheid are still woefully under-policed 20 years into our new democracy”. The Commission’s findings are being ignored, while the South Africa Police Service (SAPS) continue to fail communities and their leaders encourage violence and torture. Military solutions are proposed when we need political ones! #UniteBehind the Social Justice Coalition who are fighting for a redistribution a police resources and the upgrading of our informal settlements. Support their landmark case in the Equality court, ensuring that police resources are allocated to poor areas where crime levels are higher.
Our schools are unsafe. Equal Education’s social audit found that two in five learners in the Western Cape have experienced, and three in five have witnessed, a violent event and 43% of schools have not had teacher training on safety in the last two years. #UniteBehind Equal Education who continue their campaign to #DemandSafeSchools! The Western Cape Education Department and the SAPS continue to outsource their responsibility to hopelessly under-resourced teachers and principals. By forcing teachers to do dangerous crime prevention and response work that they are not in any way trained for; learners and teachers are continually denied their rights to education, safety, and dignity!
Women and children are the most vulnerable in our society. It’s time to put a stop to Gender-Based Violence amongst women and youth in our communities. We want a society where everyone is equally valued and respected.
The rape culture of our society destroys lives. Nearly one in two women is likely to be raped during her lifetime. 55,000 sexual offences are reported by women and children each year. Researchers say the real number could be nine times higher. 40% of South African men say they have been violent towards their partner and up to 55% of women report have being beaten by their partners. The number of women killed by their male partners is six times higher than the world average. Police cannot prevent rape but they fail to investigate and most rapists escape justice.
It’s long past time to end the silence around rape culture. We must help men, women and children to have healthy, equal relationships. #UniteBehind Sonke Gender Justice, the Women’s Legal Centre and the Women in Democracy Initiative in their struggle to dismantle the patriarchy that permeates throughout our society.
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We need all the help we can get. If you can’t make it to one of our rallies, or are unable to give of your time, please make a small donation. Every cent counts and with it we can make a real difference throughout our society.