Written by Sinai Fleary
Published on 12th May 2021
Sistah Space, an organization that provide support services for Black women and girls in the UK who have experienced domestic or sexual abuse, has launched a petition to require police and government agencies to receive cultural training to support Black victims of domestic abuse. The organization want to implement Valerie’s Law, which is in commemoration of Valerie Forde and her 22-month-old baby who was murdered by her ex-partner in 2014. The founder of Sistah Space, Ngozi Fulani, shares that the petition needs 100,000 signatures before Valerie’s law can be debated in Parliament.
Fulani commented that the grouping of Black people into BAME categories is harmful and has made it difficult to keep accurate records of figures of cases of domestic abuse against African women. Fulani, who is also an Independent Domestic Violence Advisor, stated that the Windrush scandal has created an atmosphere of fear that contributed to some Black women not seeking support due to fear of deportation. Also, she discussed the case of Sarah Everard and the extensive media coverage this received compared to the lack of coverage of Black victims of abuse in the media.
“Black women who have been abused, are being told their scars are invisible and that is not good enough. Understanding that bruises may appear different on black skin can make a real difference and can be the difference between life or death.” – Ngozi Fulani