A sea of pink pooled around the entrance of the London Police Station late Tuesday afternoon. Friends, family and community members gathered to remember a lost loved one, and to take a stand on violence against women.
26 year old Josie Glenn was working in the sex industry when she was killed last month. The man facing two charges in connection with her case has had multiple complaints filed against him previously.
— XFM News (@XFMNews) November 27, 2017
The group rallied to march together to the Safe House on Rectory Street on behalf of Josie, and for women who have victims abuse. Posters were hand drawn, some reading “Justice for Josie”, while others held signs reading, “You are not alone”.
Amiel Houghtson is a residential services manager for Anova, a shelter for women and children who have been abused. Houghtson was also a close friend of Glenn’s. Houghtson says working with abused women while balancing being the friend of a friend has proven to be difficult. She continues on to say that the process is complicated, but striving for communication that is timely would save women in the community.
“What is fast enough? What is soon enough? What is enough information? I still think we’re doing a disservice to our women and community when we just don’t do things in a timely manner. [We] don’t reach the extent and the depth that I think we’re capable of.”
London Safe Space recently opened up at the Rectory location to provide sex workers a place of comfort, to be free of judgement and to relax. They have communication lines where women can leave messages about dates, warning others about a client that didn’t pay or showed abusive behavior.
Janice Hammond was present along with Carol Morrison from UNIFOR Local 302. The women heard about the march and we’re keen on showing their support for women that are victims of abuse. Hammond says that it’s important to bring light to this topic, as she feels that some people may dismiss the conversation.
“I hate the fact that people turn a blind to women who are being abused. It would be wonderful if people would be more willing to support women in those situations. I find that it’s been almost socially acceptable for so many years and now that women are standing up and trying to bring attention to the fact that it’s not acceptable.”
Houghston says that people were asked to wear bright pink, as it was Glenn’s favourite colour.
“That was her personality. It’s a colour that’s going to get attention and its a colour that’s feminine and bright and beautiful, just like Josie was.”
Houghston stresses that it is important for her to keep repeating Glenn’s name, and to never forget the pain, and the level of fear in these situations.
“I think that it affects so much more than we can even wrap our heads around and i think we need to take this very seriously. I hate how Josie has been made an example of how serious this can get.”
25 year old Oluwatobi Boyede will appear in court this Friday. He is currently facing charges of second degree murder and offering an indignity to a body.