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JOANNA WILLIAMS

  • Summary: 

    It’s been six months since the #MeToo movement first took off. For half a year now we’ve had a regular drip-feed of stories drawing attention to the apparent suffering of women at the hands of men. So when this weekend’s  revealed the shocking abuse experienced by hundreds of women and girls in Telford we might have expected the outrage to find a new focus. The news that girls, some as young as 11, were  by gangs of mainly Muslim, Asian-heritage men could have provided further fuel to campaigners. We might have expected shows of solidarity, reminders of the importance of believing the victim, and offers of financial support.

    But no. The abuse in Telford is estimated to have involved over 1,000 girls stretching over 40 years. Young girls in the town were groomed, fed drugs and raped. They were passed between abusers like commodities. Some got pregnant, had abortions and were raped again on multiple occasions. Three women were murdered and two others died in tragedies linked to the abuse. Yet these shocking events have received relatively little coverage. Girls in Telford do not, it seems, deserve frontpage coverage in the Guardian or The Times.

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