Máiría Cahill, and violence against women after the Agreement

Máiría Cahill is a survivor, and we believe her. The recent publicity around her case is a timely reminder of the importance of stepping outside of party political agendas, wherever abuse occurs, and to offer our support to survivors of all political stripes. In recent years our understanding of violence against women, such as sexual abuse and intimate partner violence (IPV), has expanded to include the concept of coercive control. Legislation that reflects this key dynamic in these abusive circumstances …

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Amnesty International votes to support decriminalisation of prostitution

Amnesty International have voted to campaign for the decriminalisation of prostitution provided it is within an environment whereby the sellers of sex are not underage and are not coerced. This is the latest part in a debate which has been going on for some time on the topic. Amnesty’s argument is that sex work has always and will always exist and what is required is harm reduction – along with an assertion that sex workers should have the agency to …

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#SpotlightNI: Rape made known to former west Belfast MLA and kept within Sinn Fein

It’s hard to know what to say about tonight’s Spotlight programme, except to recall that the Swiss psychologist Carl Jung who once noted that the possession of secrets acts like a poison which alienates their possessor from the community. It was the public confession of Aine Adams in late 2009 that finally persuaded Mairia Cahill to try unburden herself of a secret she had been carrying since she was just 16 years old. The details are clearly still distressing for her to …

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