MEASURES promised after the murder of Sarah Everard to try to stop further violence against women have yet to be implemented — six months on.
Boris Johnson pledged “immediate steps” would be taken after Sarah, 33, was killed by an off-duty cop after being kidnapped while walking in South London in March.
Under Project Vigilant, bars and streets where sexual offences were reported were to be flooded with plain-clothes officers.
Yet the scheme — pioneered by Thames Valley Police — has yet to be rolled out in London or most of rest of the UK despite 77 murders of women since Sarah died.
Dorset and Wiltshire police are among those so far to adopt the policy.
Funding for street lighting has also been cut across the UK in the last three years.
The London boroughs where Sarah, Sabina Nessa, 28, and sisters Bibaa Henry, 46, and Nicole Smallman, 27, were killed have seen lighting budgets slashed by an average of £130,000 since 2018.
Spending in Lambeth, where Sarah was abducted, has dropped from £1,711,000 to £1,661,000.
In a statement, the council said: “All women and girls should be able to feel safe on our streets.
“The council is working with the police on providing reassurance. We will also be providing whatever assistance we can.”
In Brent, funding for street lights has fallen by £140,000 with the number of lights down from 21,000 to 20,787.
Bibaa and Nicole were stabbed to death at Fryent Country Park in Wembley in the North-West London borough.
Promises were made while the issue was in the spotlight but they have not been followed through.
Street lighting has also been reduced in Lewisham, part of the London Assembly area in which Sabina died.
Leicester and Rochdale are among others to cut budgets.
Jamie Klingler, co-founder of action group Reclaim These Streets, told The Sun: “All this shows how little has been done to protect women in the past six months.
“Promises were made while the issue was in the spotlight but they have not been followed through.”
HOW YOU CAN GET HELP:
Women’s Aid has this advice for victims and their families:
- Always keep your phone nearby.
- Get in touch with charities for help, including the Women’s Aid live chat helpline and services such as SupportLine.
- If you are in danger, call 999.
- Familiarise yourself with the Silent Solution, reporting abuse without speaking down the phone, instead dialing “55”.
- Always keep some money on you, including change for a pay phone or bus fare.
- If you suspect your partner is about to attack you, try to go to a lower-risk area of the house – for example, where there is a way out and access to a telephone.
- Avoid the kitchen and garage, where there are likely to be knives or other weapons. Avoid rooms where you might become trapped, such as the bathroom, or where you might be shut into a cupboard or other small space.
If you are a victim of domestic abuse, SupportLine is open Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 6pm to 8pm on 01708 765200. The charity’s email support service is open weekdays and weekends during the crisis – [email protected]
Women’s Aid provides a live chat service available. from 10am to noon.
You can also call the freephone 24-hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247.
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