Shawlands nightspots join anti-rape campaign

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Staff from Shawlands nightclub The Shed are backing the Police Scotland campaign reaching out to young men on the subject of rape.

The We Can Stop It rape prevention campaign launched earlier this month at The Butterfly and the Pig’s city centre bar.

Aimed at men aged 16-27, the hard-hitting ad is broadcast on TV post-watershed, in the hope of challenging attitudes towards consent and rape.

Chief constable sir Stephen House met staff from both The Butterfly and the Pig and The Shed who were taking part in bystander training, allowing those behind the bar to recognise when an intervention could prevent someone becoming a victim of sexual assault.

He said: “Sex without consent is rape. There are no excuses. If someone is drunk or drugged, they cannot give consent.

“We Can Stop It sends a very clear message - we can and we must prevent rape and sexual assault.

“We want to encourage people to come forward and to report. Let me be very clear, we will listen and we will act. Our ultimate aim though, with our partners, is preventing these crimes in the first place and this campaign contributes to that work.”

Chief inspector Graham Goulden, bystander trainer at the Violence Reduction Unit, added: “It’s great to see those who work in pubs and clubs showing this willingness to see their role in the prevention of this crime. They are part of the solution.”

Paul Banham, area manager of The B&P, The Shed and The Buff Club, said: “As a business operating in the night-time economy, we are committed to creating and maintaining a safe and secure environment for our customers. I would encourage other bars and clubs to get involved.”

The issue remains prevalent in the southside since thousands took to the streets around Queen’s Park for a midnight march last summer.

The organisers of These Streets Were Made for Walking recently posted on the Facebook page: “One year ago today, the people of Glasgow took to the streets in a show of strength and solidarity after a series of sexual offences threatened to make the city’s residents fearful and intimidated.

“We want to know if you have felt safer in the past year when walking? What would you like to see us achieve in 2015?”

Responses call for an annual march, “to keep the pressure on to make the streets safer”.