Women of African Descent Issue Statement on Sexual Assault
Women of African descent came together at the National & Global Reparations Meeting convened by the Institute of the Black World (IBW)/National African American Reparations Commission (NAARC) in New Orleans to speak on the long history of sexual assault and unfettered crimes against women of African descent during enslavement.
Just as we do not condone or take lightly the present disclosures of sexual harassment, we want to make sure it is never forgotten the unfettered crimes against women of African descent during the enslavement era and beyond that to date still await remedy.
For well over 350 years Black women were viciously raped, savagely beaten, tortured, and had fetuses cut out of their bellies, oft times by the perpetrator of the sexual assault.
Women who resisted were terrorized, continuously defiled and disrespected, and lynchings were commonplace. Oft-times white women were complicit in condoning the sexual crimes of white men against Black women, and oft-times falsely accused Black men of rape, leading to murder and dismemberment.
As attention is called to the ugly reality of present-day sexual harassment, there must also be reparatory justice to the historical sexual violations of Black women during the enslavement-era and beyond.
This can be accomplished through the passage of HR40 - The COMMISSION TO STUDY AND DEVELOP REPARATION PROPOSALS FOR AFRICAN AMERICANS ACT.