Sunday, March 7, 2021

Greece’s #MeToo motion

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Greece’s Olympic crusing champion Sofia Bekatorou’s choice to talk out over an alleged sexual assault by a high-ranking federation official in 1998 has set off the nation’s #MeToo motion. Shortly after the previous Olympic gold medallist revealed the assault earlier in January throughout a web-based occasion organised by the Ministry of Culture and Sports in regards to the safety of youngsters in sport, dozens of different instances emerged, as a domino impact that uncovered the darkish aspect of sports activities in Greece. 
Following the highly effective testimony on the assault that occurred throughout preparations for the 2000 Sydney Olympics within the federation official’s resort room, the Athens public prosecutor’s workplace launched a preliminary investigation and when the official’s title was revealed, his Hellenic Sailing Federation (HSF) membership was suspended. Several members of the federation resigned out of respect to Bekatorou, and Greece’s Stavros Niarchos Foundation froze all funds to HSF. Although the case has been referred to a prosecutor, the process is taken into account fairly a formality, as below Greek Criminal Law the crime is prescribed after 15 years. The perpetrator has denied any allegations, labelling Bekatorou’s feedback as “false and slanderous”.
Many crusaded in opposition to the allegations, questioning why it took them so lengthy to speak about it and questioned the character of the assault together with the motives of the sufferer. This sceptic response by an enormous variety of the Greek inhabitants solely demonstrated the pathogenies of the society, proving that talking out in opposition to sexual assaults -“even after so many years”-, is far more problematic than the incident itself. Faced with prejudice and accused of provocation, the sexual assault victims nonetheless discover themselves trapped in a state of affairs the place they should justify themselves for daring to have a voice in regards to the incident(s) that stigmatised their lives thereafter.
Support by the state is essential. Today Bekatorou could also be fortunate sufficient to get pleasure from the advantages of establishments’ evolution, the judiciary’s progressiveness, society’s solidarity and the neighborhood’s methods of psychological assist. Back then, although, the case wasn’t the identical and that was one of many most important the reason why the Veteran Olympic champion and now mom of two, didn’t break her silence earlier.
“I hope…that other women and people who have experienced sexual abuse will come forward so that our society will be more healthy, and we’ll no longer be afraid”
The case just isn’t the identical for a lot of ladies that had the identical expertise however lacked the publicity of Bekatorou. For a lot of them, their “condition of infamosity” wouldn’t make the identical media fuss, rendering it uncertain that they might ever dare to share their private expertise, with out the viewers questioning their morals and consent. Unless there’s a collective motion and mobilisation, as within the case of Aristotle University in Greece’s second-largest metropolis, Thessaloniki. Following the instance of Bekatorou, former college college students spoke out in opposition to one in all their professors, who was systematically exploiting his tutorial standing to harass his feminine college students. Since the veteran crusing champion broke her silence, dozens adopted. 
Sexual assault instances will maintain developing, as objectification nonetheless prevails each in direction of men and women. Given that the mentality change saying “no” means “no” is a long-term battle, governments ought to first begin with the fundamentals; by releasing victims from the ethical must first show that they don’t seem to be responsible of being sexually abused, by forming the mechanisms to guard and heal them and by holding perpetrators accountable. When authorities and societies cease turning a blind eye, then nobody will ever be alone.

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