YOUNG people are to be the target of a series of radio ads launched in Norfolk and Suffolk from tonight (Thursday August 9) tackling the issue of rape and serious sexual assault.
Norfolk and Suffolk Police have teamed up with the regional station KISS to send out crucial messages about the dangers of becoming victims, or offenders, as they head out for the night whether to a club, a house party or to mark the end of exams.
The move is part of the forces’ ‘Time to Stop’ campaign launched in June to raise awareness of rape and sexual violence particularly among young women and men aged 17 to 24. Reports of rape and sexual offences historically rise over the summer – believed to be linked to increased socialising during such warm weather periods.
There are two main versions of adverts with one focusing on women, who are urged to look out for each other and plan ahead for their night out, while the other serves as a reminder to men to realise when ‘no means no’.
Detective Chief Inspector David Cutler of Suffolk Police, “The purpose of the campaign has always been to not only highlight the services available to victims of such abuse but to attempt to prevent this type of crime in the first place.
“A significant number of rapes and sexual assaults in both counties are linked to alcohol and nights out and in most cases the victim and offender know one another or have just met.”
More than 1000 women were victims of rape and serious sexual assault across both counties last year.
DCI Cutler also urged young men to take heed.
“The majority of rapes are committed by someone who knows the victim and people can get into situations they never intended to and suddenly become very vulnerable - this includes young males who fail to realise when it’s not okay.
“There is no excuse for overstepping the mark you should know when it is ‘Time to Stop’.”
A video that goes with the campaign can be seen here