Following the Sarah Everard tragedy, ministers have unveiled a bold new plan to keep women safe.
In the aftermath of Sarah Everard’s death, Scotland is on track to see a distinct crime of sexist abuse, according to the Justice Secretary.
A new standalone offence, according to SNP minister Keith Brown, would “send a very crucial message” that sexist “behaviours are not acceptable in society for men.” At this time, discrimination towards race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or transgender status aggravates offenses.
Baroness Kennedy, a Labour peer and barrister, is now investigating misogyny in Scotland.
Her report is anticipated to establish a legal definition of misogyny, which might lead to the introduction of a new crime aimed at criminalizing prejudice against women and girls.
Mr Brown told BBC Scotland’s The Sunday Show, citing her research, that “a standalone misogyny charge… would be one way of sending a very crucial signal that these types of behaviors are not acceptable in society for men.”
“We’ll have to wait and see what Helena Kennedy has to say,” he continued. Helena Kennedy has been the subject of several conversations between me and my coworkers.
“Her work is going extremely well, and it’s possible that we’ll end up relying on her recommendations for a single misogynistic offense.
“Too many women believe the judicial system fails them in critical ways, and this is one occasion where it may do so by delivering a powerful message.”
As part of her role, Baroness Kennedy is looking into whether the SNP’s hate crime statute should expressly protect women.
Last year, the absence of women as a protected group sparked debate, especially because transgender persons, described as “cross dressers,” were included.
The row was part of a larger discussion about transgender rights and whether people should be entitled to self-declare their gender, which has enveloped the SNP.
To combat misogyny, Lady Kennedy’s group will look into “whether there are loopholes in the law that could be addressed by a specific criminal offence.”
Its mandate includes looking into evidence of women’s and girls’ experiences “through a gendered analytical lens.”
The QC expressed her dissatisfaction with police departments’ statements that they will “learn lessons” after a catastrophe.
“Institutions frequently put their own reputations first,” she warned.
She also chastised the Metropolitan Police Service for failing to “Brinkwire Summary News.”