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  • Reforming the criminal law to address misogyny: consultation

    Created: 13/03/2023
    News/Events Category: General News

    Misogynistic harassment could become a criminal offence as part of proposals aimed at providing greater protection for women and girls.

    A consultation has been launched by The Scottish Government on the draft reforms, which would create five new laws to provide police and prosecutors with new powers to tackle the corrosive effects of misogyny.

    The proposals are based on the recommendations made by the Working Group on Misogyny led by Baroness Kennedy. This concluded that the harmful effects of misogyny meant women and girls required new protection through criminal law.

    Under the proposals, the scope of how current laws tackle misogynistic abuse would be expanded to include threatening, abusive or sexual behaviour directed towards women or girls – because of their gender– which is likely to cause them to feel degradation, humiliation or distress.

    It would also be used to tackle situations where women or girls are subjected to threatening or abusive messages about rape, sexual assault or disfigurement – either in person or online.

    The consultation will run from now until 02 June 2023.

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