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“Reclaim the Night”: Virtual vigil for Sarah Everard shows importance of fighting discrimination

The event raised awareness on feminism and the importance of intersectionality

By: Mireia Jimenez

Image courtesy of CASE.

The Aberdeen Consent Awareness & Sexual Education Group (ABDN CASE) hosted a virtual vigil and fundraiser in memory of Sarah Everard on 20 March in collaboration with Rape Crisis Grampian and the University of Aberdeen Feminist Society.

The event consisted of short speeches by the representatives of each group and individuals, a minute of silence and a discussion on how to protect local communities from acts of structural violence and discrimination.

A fundraiser was also organised for Rape Crisis Grampian, which provides support for those over the age of 13 that have been subjected to sexual violence at any time in their life.

CASE Convenor Johanna Kauppi said: “It has been said many times that Sarah did everything right; she wore bright colours and sensible shoes, she took a well-lit route home and called a family member as she was walking home from a friend's house. As we know, this did not protect her.”

Kauppi also highlighted the importance of intersectionality in the Reclaim the Night movement, condemning gender-based violence as well as racism, homophobia and transphobia.

At this point, an individual interrupted her speech, shouting transphobic abuse at the organisers and attendees and was immediately removed from the event.

CASE released a statement apologising profusely over the outburst, stating: “There is no space or tolerance for transphobia at CASE, at the University of Aberdeen, or in society. We aim to provide a safer space for all, and will investigate the incident thoroughly as well as review our event policies to try to reduce the likelihood of this incident being repeated.”

Despite this, Reclaim the Night was an event for people to speak up about their own experiences and share their feelings and anxieties.

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