Men in Britain are not safe.
Satbir Singh Bedi | 14 Feb 2014
72,000 males are raped and sexually assaulted in UK every year, according to data released by thee Government. Of course, all these cases are not reported.
10% of the rapes in UK are against men.
Police recorded 2,164 rape and sexual assaults against males aged 13 or over in the year ending September 2013, according to the latest figures.
In view of this, Britain has decided for the first time to commit £500,000 over the next financial year to provide services, like advice and counselling, to help male victims who previously have not been able to receive such support and encourage them to come forward after experiencing such a crime.
Minister, Damian Green has said, "we must help all victims to cope, and as far as possible recover, from the impacts of crime - especially when it is as serious as rape or sexual abuse. Despite large number of sexual assaults against men, many choose not to come forward, either to report the crime or seek the support they need. I am determined to help break the silence on a subject still seen as taboo."
"Average sentences for male rape have increased but there is more to do. That is why we are toughening up sentencing and have introduced a mandatory life sentence for anyone convicted of a second very serious sexual or violent crime."
All charities and support organizations who feel they can offer help specifically for male victims, will be eligible for help from the fund. This will be in addition to the services already available for rape or sexual abuse victims and ensure victims of most serious crimes received the highest level of support.
Duncan Craig founder of Survivors Manchester, the one organisation which helps such male victims has welcomed the new funding.
Mr Craig said, "In the past there has not been enough support in the UK for male victims of sexual violence, such as myself. But in the future I would like to see both the government and society begin talking more openly about boys and men as victims and see us trying to make a positive change to pulling down those barriers that stop boys and men speaking up. This funding will help to raise awareness of the issue and ensure that male victims are no longer ignored."
"I'd like to tell all boys and men that are sitting in silence I have been there. I have been silent and it's not a nice place to be. Yes it's difficult, embarrassing and painful to speak out but once you start healing, you will be able to break free from the legacy. Get support lads, don't suffer. You deserve to be able to heal."
Actor James Sutton plays rape victim John Paul McQueen in Hollyoaks. He worked with Survivors Manchester on the soap's current storyline and is supporting the ministry of justice to raise awareness of the issue of male rape and sexual violence.
Mr Sutton said, "The reason it was so important for Hollyoaks to feature a male rape storyline is because it is so rarely talked about. The over-riding message from survivors I met while researching the role was that victims of male sexual violence do not know where to go for help and support."
Victim's commissioner Baroness Newlove said "We must never underestimate the pain that victims go through as a result of such disturbing crimes. Victims of male rape have told me that they need more support - I'm glad the government has listened."
Around 91% of offenders in 2011 who were found guilty of rape of a male were given custodial sentences, with an average jail time of eight-and-a-half years.