A police authored poem depicting the rape of a woman on a Christmas night out has been criticised by a women’s charity.
Nottinghamshire Police’s Nightmare Before Christmas, was penned in a bid to raise awareness of sexual assaults.
Midland’s Women Aid has said the poem, based on Twas the Night Before Christmas, trivialises rape and should be withdrawn.
“I’m quite appalled that the authorities thought this would have the desired effect on perpetrators,” said Cathy Saunders, speaking on behalf of the charity.
“I personally think it should be withdrawn and replaced with something that has a little bit more insight and advice for women on how to keep themselves safe.”
The police force responded by saying that the poem is not offensive and is directed at attackers.
Helen Chamberlain of Nottinghamshire Police said, “We have been heavily criticised in the past for focusing on victims and giving out persistent warnings to victims about keeping safe.
“This year we decided to try a different tactic and target the perpetrator.
“I accept it has caused a stir and caused people to talk and that’s what it was meant to do,” she said.
Leonie Mountain, rape project manager at the Incest and Sexual Abuse Survivors in Newark, said: “I am concerned this poem does not give out the impact rape and sexual violence has on its victims.
“The effects are – and can be – life-changing and very long-lasting. I don’t think the poem depicts this.”