Councillor shares sexual harassment story in show of support following Sarah Everard's death
- Credit: Cllr Musk
A Welwyn Hatfield borough councillor has chosen to share her experience of sexual harassment following the tragic death of Sarah Everard and the vigil for her on Clapham Common over the weekend.
Cllr Lucy Musk, of Haldens Ward, said she wants to share her story not for sympathy but 'to offer support and understanding'.
Cllr Musk said: "In March 2019, I was approached by a man at 7.30 in the morning. He asked for a cigarette and passed comment on the weather. At this point, I didn’t feel threatened. It was a bright sunny morning.
"I gave him a cigarette and then his conversation changed. He asked about my preferences in men if I was in a relationship and could he show me a good time. I declined and walked away. Slightly annoyed but carried on. I said no.
"For several weeks after this, the same man approached me in Welwyn Garden City town centre. It was then I started to feel threatened and scared and I got the police involved.
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"Their initial response was for me to change my appearance and change my routine, effectively letting him off the hook.
"Then the nastiest part happened this man slid up behind me in Costa, made sexually explicit remarks about the barista, and then said: 'If you come down the alley I will show you a good time’.
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"At this point, I froze. I was terrified. Thankfully more people turned up and I escaped to the train. I called the police again.
"It turned out that this man was known to the police when they eventually got round to getting CCTV after several attempts to close the case.
"He was arrested and I was invited to give a statement. In an interview room as if I was a criminal. This happened through March and April 2019.
"The case went to court in November 2019, he was found guilty of non-violent harassment.
"Whilst I am aware that this is a very mild case in what we suffer this is just the most recent one that happened to me.
"I am sharing this publicly not for sympathy but to offer support and understanding."