Boris Johnson rejects calls to make misogyny a hate crime

Boris Johnson rejects calls to make misogyny a hate crime

UK PM Boris Johnson is not in favor of making misogyny a hate crime, stating that there is adequate legislation to protect women.

During an interview with BBC Breakfast’s Dan Walker, Boris Johnson said that widening “the scope of what you ask the police to do” will only “increase the problems”.

Instead, the PM stated that the police must focus on “the very real crimes…that many people feel”.

Image: Daily Express

Johnson went on to say that “radical change” in policing must occur in order to combat crimes such as rape, domestic violence and harassment:

“There is abundant statute that is not being properly enforced, and that’s what we need to focus on.”

However, campaigners stress that misogyny is one of the main causes for violence against women, hence its need to be recognised as a hate crime in England and Wales.

Johnson’s comments come after two women were recently killed. School teacher Sabina Nessa was murdered on her way to meet a friend. Sarah Everard was kidnapped, raped and murdered by an officer.

The attacks have sparked growing community fears and distrust, particularly towards police officials.

Patsy Stevenson, who attended Sarah Everard’s vigil on March 13 this year, was arrested and ordered a £200 penalty notice. Following her arrest, she said “about 50” police officers contacted her via the dating app Tinder.

Image: Essex Live

“It is almost like an intimidation thing, saying ‘look we can see you’, and that, to me, is terrifying.”

“They know what I went through and they know that I’m fearful of police and they’ve done that for a reason”, she said.

Stevenson also added that she has received threats about kidnapping her, which have made her feel paranoid when out in public.

Studies from the Femicide Census revealed that across the UK, 1,425 women were killed by men between 2008 – 2018, averaging to one murder every three days.

The Office for National Statistics found in 2020 that 4.9 million women had been victims of sexual assault during their lives. Additionally, 98.5% of rapists were identified as men.

Image: BBC

Speaking to Sky News, Policing Minister Kit Malthouse admitted that rape conviction rates are “disgracefully low”.

Boris Johnson has said that in order to alleviate this fear and change the culture within forces, more female officers must be recruited and promoted.

Met Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick has confirmed that an independent review of the police force’s culture and standards will occur on Monday.

Priti Patel, Home Secretary, said an inquiry into the “systematic failures” that led to Sarah Everard’s death would be launched.