Survivor's courage will help others
ANONYMITY for the victims of sexual offences is an important feature of our justice system. It was introduced, contrary to the general principal of open justice, because without it many would not come forward to report attacks and the guilty would go unpunished.
But, rightly, the law allows survivors to waive this and tell the world about both their terrible ordeal and how they continue to fight on with daily life. It is a very personal decision, and a truly courageous one.
Sally Maby, featured on today's front page, made that choice because she hopes that putting a human face to her experiences will give others the strength they need to come forward and report similar crimes committed against them.
Miss Maby even faced the man who preyed upon her as a young girl in the courtroom. Normally, a victim's words on how they have been affected are presented in a written statement. Instead, Miss Maby stood up in front of her attacker to tell the court how she would wake up, crying and lonely.
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Her courage is remarkable.
Sexual offences are often about an attacker exerting power over a victim, but in this case Miss Maby has not only wrested back control of her life but empowered others to do the same.
She talks of finally "being free". She deserves it.