A feminist group named Sisters Uncut made a marked protest against government cuts against domestic violence services at the London premier of Meryl Streep’s new film Suffragette, with some of the protesters taking to lying down on the red carpet in an attempt to make their point. The various members from the feminist group claimed that they were using “suffragette methods to declare that, as long as violence against women continues, the battle for women’s liberation has not yet been won. Dead women can’t vote.”
The women were arguing that “austerity has reduced the availability of refuges, benefits, social housing and legal aid,” and that “We believe that all women facing domestic violence should be able to access support and safety.” A support worker from a specialist South Asian refuge, “I am here because I am angry about cuts to specialist services. But I am also here to represent – to show that all women of all backgrounds have rights and if they are not met we will take action until they are.”
The film the women were protesting in front of is about various members of the British women’s suffragette movement that famously campaigned for the right to vote during the late 19th and early 20th Century. Another actress on the red carpet, Romola Garai, said to reporters “I haven’t spoken to them or seen their demands but I’m happy to see the suffrage movement is alive and happening.” The protesters chose to leave of their own free will, claiming they’d made their point adequately. Their protest has been met with support by the largely female cast of the film and the general population/media.
How do you feel about the point being made by these women? Do you agree with them that this country doesn’t cater enough to women struggling with domestic violence and should be investing money in services rather than cutting funding? Maybe you feel that they’re wrong, that this is more fuss over nothing, or that men and women have already reached equality making protests such as this pointless. Let us know what you think in the comments below and start adding to the conversation.