Good grief. Salvation Army workers refuse to help rape victim

(28 Posts)
edam Thu 27-Sep-12 15:40:15

appalling. How could someone, especially someone who tries to help other people, refuse to make a phone call for a woman who has been raped?

Very depressing bunch of stories in the news this week showing so many people are still hostile to victims - including those who are paid to help them. The police and social services refused to investigate multiple cases of rape and abuse of girls in Rochdale and Rotherham, and (not on the same level, obv, but still relevant) all the people saying 'what's the problem' with the teacher absconding with Megan Stammer aged 15 (but 14 when the relationship started)...

Fobwatch Thu 27-Sep-12 15:56:26

'Kinell

Whatever next?

NicholasTeakozy Thu 27-Sep-12 16:07:28

That's truly awful. How can an organisation founded on 'Christian principles' allow that?

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Extrospektiv Thu 27-Sep-12 17:03:52

This is awful sad

As far as them being a harmful sexist homophobic cult:

SA is not a part of the war on women, nor are any peaceful religious groups (except if they have the influence to enforce anti-feminist ideology on those who don't want anything to do with them, by law or overwhelming sociocultural pressure.)

It is a traditionalist Christian group with strict rules, and yes- they believe in patriarchal gender roles, but it's not as if they get to conscript people, there are some women who believe that is the right way to live and who want to do so. Women who want to live in submission to males because they think God requires it, anti-contraception traditional Catholic women who want to have 12 children or as many as nature gives them and be a homemaker instead of going to work, women who live by the patriarchal interpretations of Islam and other religions- not being beaten/raped/mutilated, just believing that they are there to be the obedient helper of a husband- have just as much right to live the way they want as a lesbian separatist radfem. As long as these groups don't get to tell all women what to do and perpetuate oppression. At this time, they have little influence on electoral or judicial politics, social attitudes outside their group or popular culture. So I do not see them as a threat.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Tortu Thu 27-Sep-12 19:30:55

I live opposite a SA centre and think they're amazing. I'm sure this is just a case of two freaked-out individuals. Honestly, the things I can see going on opposite show real, genuine support for the community and, I know this is completely anecdotal, I think they're an amazing organisation.

Hmm. I don't think it's in any way official SA policy to 'only help males' given that they run a lot of toddler groups and have a women's 'division', so it's likely that the bloke on the desk that night was simply a spectacularly nasty dickhead - and the SA officials have said that they have suspended him and are going to be looking into the incident.

But all my dealings with them have been ever so slightly cautious. I don't think their ethos is as fluffy and harmless as they like to display it as being, either.

BegoniaBampot Thu 27-Sep-12 23:21:54

Agree with them being a bit cult like. Was told a few things by someone raised in the SA which was a bit off.

HeathRobinson Thu 27-Sep-12 23:26:51

But well done that young man who helped her.

BegoniaBampot Thu 27-Sep-12 23:50:38

Exactly, he was the only one to help this poor girl.

edam Fri 28-Sep-12 10:04:18

quite, well done him, but Sally Army man who turned her away is a disgusting individual who should never be allowed near the public. I do wonder what kind of organisation breeds people like that or lets people like that represent them.

slug Fri 28-Sep-12 10:23:56

I used to be quite fond of the SA until they were at the forefront of the campaign against homosexual law reform in NZ in the 80's. It shed some light on their more bigoted side which I've never been able to reconcile with their professed attitude of Christian tolerance.

Elliot is a bloody hero. Good for him helping her. It sounds like he was the only one that night.

As for the Salvation Army, I know good people that work for them. However, the rules can be very restrictive. I knew a man who was dying of cancer, very addicted to alcohol and obviously not going to stop drinking because of his extreme pain. The Salvation Army refused to waive their rule about not giving him emergency shelter because he was under the influence. I took him into our hostel and he was the least trouble of any of my clients. He would have been sleeping rough otherwise. I have also had some issues with the idea that food, shelter, care can be dependent on religious attendance. I think if you are offering religion along with bread, give the bread first and if people want the religion they can stay for it. Not the other way round.

HoldMeCloserTonyDanza Tue 02-Oct-12 01:56:38

What a lovely young lad to help her, and take on going public so her anonymity isn't in jeopardy.

How fucking heartless do you have to be to turn away a half naked rape victim. Fucking hell.

weegiemum Tue 02-Oct-12 02:06:02

I have 3 friends in the SA. they'd all have been first on the scene and been appalled at this crime and what their organisation did/didn't do.

but I freely there's few religious organisations that don't, at least some of the time, have an anti-women bias. The SA may well be one. But I think it was just a case in this situation of unexpected but unforgivable twittery!

Childrenofthestones Tue 02-Oct-12 10:16:43

In all fairness to the SA any organisation can have assholes who cannot correctly judge a situation that they find themselves in.
If professionals like the police and social services can shun rape victims and refuse them help for over ten years in towns like Rochdale, why are we surprised when a couple of volunteers who have never had to handle something like a rape victim, then misjudge a situation.
Not an excuse, just a possible reason.

Viviennemary Tue 02-Oct-12 12:28:15

In fairness every organisation will have people like this. There is no point in bashing the whole salvation army who do a lot of good works because of this one incident. Every religion and organisation and profession has its failures.

dotnet Tue 02-Oct-12 12:32:07

Yes, I agree with Childrenofthestones. It sounds as if the person on reception was possibly not a Salvationist at all - ? he's referred to as a member of the night staff. Maybe the SA do have some paid employees.

The Salvation Army will be having kittens over this. It is absolutely not the way they are, so this must be a huge embarrassment for them, and casts a shadow over the enormous amount of terrific work they do.

Durab Wed 03-Oct-12 16:43:00

I think it's most likely that the people working in the early hours of the morning were scared. The young man helping the victim, is clearly an angel, but,well, he doesn't look like one. Doesn't make their response OK, but might explain it.

The Salvation Army have agreed it was an inadequate response by suspending the individuals involved. Every organisation has people who aren't up to the job. A teacher who runs off with a pupil? Doesn't mean for a minute that teachers as a body are child abusers or that Salvationists are uncaring.

I've worked night shifts in shelters in the UK and North America for decades. None of my team would have turned her away. If they were scared, they have no business working there.

lovechoc Wed 03-Oct-12 19:22:35

"In fairness every organisation will have people like this. There is no point in bashing the whole salvation army who do a lot of good works because of this one incident. Every religion and organisation and profession has its failures."

Very well said.

PinkMilkIsMyFavouriteAndMyBest Wed 03-Oct-12 19:32:03

durab what are angels supposed to look like? If this is the reason the young girl was refused help, that makes it worse, not better - judging a young man on his appearance to the point of refusing to even make a phone call to the police.

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