Sadiq Khan MP said:
Yesterday I took some time to read Dame Elish Angiolini's report on the investigation and prosecution of rape in London. It is a truly shocking read. It shines a light into how women in London who have been victims of sexual assault have been repeatedly let down by the system.
Among the findings of Baroness Elish there was one statistic that stuck out for me – in the last ten years the number of women raped in London has increased by 68% while at the same time the number of prosecutions has risen by just 17%. That is a damning indictment of a criminal justice system that instead of being there to help the victims has let them down.
Reading Dame Elish’s report I was reminded of the inquiry and report into the systematic failures of the police and prosecutors into the murder of Stephen Lawrence. One of the few positives that came from Stephen's tragic death was the complete overhaul of how murders were investigated. Two decades later and as a direct result of the changes to the way murders are investigated we have seen a huge rise in conviction rates.
Today the police and prosecutors must treat the Dame Elish’s report in the same way they took on board Lord McPherson’s. They must set out a clear strategy and timetable on how they will respond.
For my part I will make this commitment to all Londoners – if I am successful in my bid to become Mayor of London I commit to making the Met's response to sexual assault and rape a priority for my first year as Mayor. More specialist, trained officers, and more support for victims so they feel able to come forward. As the Met Commissioner has said, we need to put dealing with rape and sexual assault on the same level of priority as counter-terrorism.
And I make this pledge – if I become Mayor I will make it my business to ensure that no woman who has been the victim of sexual violence feels abandoned.
If you’d like to look at the full report into sexual violence against women in London click on this link.
If you have thoughts about how we should address the issues of rape, sexual assault and violence against women then please send me your ideas.