This year, Reclaim the Night in Canberra will be hosted by the Canberra Rape Crisis Centre.

Location: Garema Place, Canberra
Date: Friday the 31st of October
Time: 6:00pm

This years focus is “Reclaiming our Space.”

Reclaim the Night is a community event that has been held in Canberra for many years. It began as an angry protest against messages women were given by police to stay indoors so as to not be sexually assaulted or murdered by the Yorkshire Ripper (a murderer and rapist in Leeds). News quickly spread and soon Reclaim the Night marches were happening in diverse countries across the world. These days it is a community event to symbolize everyone’s right to be safe in our community.

It is also part of a global movement to raise awareness about sexual assault and its impacts on the community and women, children, young people, families and men. Sexual violence impacts on 1 in three girls and 1 in six boys before the age of 18. 1 in 6 women will be sexually assaulted across their adult lifetimes. This can result in a long term legacy of shame, silence and self blame for survivors. These impacts can be challenged by increasing our understanding of sexual assault trauma and the harm it can do to people and communities.

Sexual violence also has tremendous impacts on our community through the enormous cost of untreated trauma on our economy. By 2020 the cost of violence against women in Australia is set to top 15.6 billion dollars. International trauma experts predict that the health burden of untreated trauma will soon overtake heart disease and obesity as the largest issue for governments and communities to respond to.

Survivors of sexual violence(particularly child sexual assault) are over represented in all of our systems at rates of 90% for women, and 70% for men. These systems include mental health, prisons, homelessness services, drug and alcohol services.

We hope you can join us to continue to raise awareness about this very important issue.