Shocking 64-Page Report by AWAM Details Stories of Sexual Harassment, Rape, Child Grooming & More

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source: Serious Women

Period spot checks, rape culture, sexual harassment, sexual assault, stalking, child grooming and rape.

All of these issues are prevalent in Malaysian society yet there are still avid deniers undermining or even ignoring that these even exist or are as pressing as they are.

Their reasoning is that there just isn’t enough evidence proving that this happens but today, a full 64-page report has been published on All Women’s Action Society (AWAM) illustrating the testimonies of over 700 people totalling up to 1,145 incidents.

As a way to amplify the voices of these survivors as well as finally shutting down the naysayers, JUICE will provide a short summary of the findings of this survey conducted via Google Forms by Save The Schools MY and AWAM.

The report also includes several anecdotes, making it even more harrowing.

How did these traumatising incidents affect the survivors?

Across all 1145 incidents, 274 of them (23.9%) led to survivors experiencing negative psychosocial consequences, affecting their mental health, livelihood, school lives and relationships.

Among these 274 incidents, 85 of them (31%) involved multiple psychosocial consequences.

Consequently, these victims did not feel safe around males and grew very distrustful of them.

There were 17 diagnoses of mental health conditions. Anxiety and depression make up close to 75% of these diagnoses.

12 skipped or no longer attended school events, 6 stopped going to school altogether and 5 said that their academic performance declined.

Sexual Harassment

Schools are supposed to be a safe institution for young children yet 89.2% of all sexual harassment violations occurred in primary and secondary institutions of learning.

76.7% of sexual harassment violations involved child survivors and 91.9% of them are female victims.

Despite the severity of the situation, 851 (81.4%) sexual harassment violations were not disclosed/reported to anyone.

In 71 (8.3%) of these violations, however, survivors either took action or suffered negative consequences.

Period Spot Checks

We’ve previously reported on period spot checks before, naming it one of the most invasive practices that has oddly become somewhat of a norm in schools.

Used as a way to check if a girl is lying about her period to skip religious activities, this practice has received backlash over the past year even though it has been around for as long as most women can remember.

There has been reports of people denying this practice’s existence but with these testimonies, it’s clear that it is still alive and well.

Since it has become so deeply-entrenched in the system, only 5 (6.8%) period spot check violations were disclosed or reported to someone.

According to the report, most of these spot checks were done during the formative years of a woman’s life, which is during her adolescence. This makes it even more traumatising when rumours begin to circulate regarding students’ private parts.

In the report, an anecdote detailed a student’s experience with inappropriate jokes by male teachers due to these rumours.

Rape

One of the most shocking findings of the report disclosed that the youngest victim of rape was only 8-years-old.

All 10 of the recorded victims of rape are female.

Eight alleged rape violations occurred in school. Secondary schools were where 50% of all alleged violations occurred. This was followed by primary schools (37.5%) and international schools (12.5%).

In 9 alleged rape violations, the perpetrator’s relationship with the survivor were known.

5 survivors still experience psychosocial consequences until today.

A survey by Women’s Aid Organisation recently revealed that majority of Malaysians believe rape is a woman’s fault, making these findings even more troubling.

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For the 1 survivor who did tell someone about the alleged violation, it was to her family, but only after they asked her about the pain and bleeding that she was experiencing at her private part.

The perpetrator was transferred to another school and the principal paid the family to keep quiet about the alleged rape violation.

Child Grooming

Child grooming is prevalent in Malaysia and it is made abundantly clear through the skyrocketing of child pornography during the first wave of the pandemic. 

It’s also deeply troubling that one of the most popular dating apps in Malaysia, Litmatch, is a cesspool for child groomers. 

According to the report, 84.4% of victims of child grooming are female, the youngest being 7-years-old and the oldest being 17-years-old.

93.75% of actual/alleged child grooming violations took place in primary and secondary educational institutions.

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In these cases, one survivor transferred to another school to escape their perpetrator while another victim was bullied and blamed for the incident by the teachers at the school.

There was only one conviction.

Nevertheless, the perpetrator was convicted 3 years later based on reports of misconduct towards other female students. Hence, the survivor’s experience of child grooming and sexual harassment was never made known to the authorities.

Stalking

95% of alleged stalking violations took place in primary and secondary educational institutions.

At least 25% of alleged stalking violations continued for at least a year – 20% for one year, 40% for two years, and 40% for five years.

95% of all perpetrators were men.

Most of the reports made regarding the stalking were not taken seriously.

There was even a domestic abuse victim who penned a harrowing letter to call for anti-stalking laws, yet nothing has come into fruition yet.

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The report had a sample size of 770 testimonies, yet it revealed shocking findings that will hopefully open the eyes of all Malaysians to the true severity of these issues towards our young ones, especially those who are female.

This situation is nothing to turn a blind eye to and while laws are currently being tabled in parliament, we need to remain proactive and speak up when we see things like this happening to the people around us.

If there are no laws to protect us, at least we can try to protect each other in the meantime.

JUICE has only scratched the surface of the report, so if you wish to read further, click here.

If you wish to seek help, here are several hotlines you can contact:

1. WOMEN’S AID ORGANISATION (WAO)
Operating hours: 24-hour
Contact: +603-79563488
SMS/WhatsApp: +6018-9888058
Website | Facebook | Twitter

2. ALL WOMEN’S ACTION SOCIETY (AWAM)
Operating hours: Weekdays (9.30am – 4.30pm)
Contact: +603-78770224
WhatsApp: +6016-2284221 | +6016-2374221
Email: [email protected]
Website | Facebook | Twitter