On the evening of 8th March, International Women's* Day, at Athens Technical University, our friend intervened as a bystander in an escalation of violence between two groups and was herself badly beaten.
Our friend was there for a discussion about the dire situation of migrants on the islands of Lesvos and Evros when there were loud shouts from outside. People from the meeting went outside but found they did not know any of the ten people involved in the on-going confrontation. Things then developed into a physical struggle at which point our friend attempted to prevent a person with significant physical advantage from beating another. In an unprovoked attack, the person with a significant physical advantage then punched our friend three times to the eye.
This was an act of gendered violence and must be understood as such.
"The injured companion was taken to hospital where she was found with open rupturing trauma, a periorbital hematoma and a minor brain injury that came from the first three punches. She was prescribed medication and instructed to recover from the injury. For some days her eye was closed by swelling and two weeks later she was still swollen and bruised. This injury deprived her of necessary wages for her economic survival."
The timing of this attack, directly before the onset of the coronavirus epidemic, has meant that her loss of 220 euros in wages is more impactful than it may have been at another moment. Nevertheless, due to the current situation, our friend has been uncomfortable with asking for financial solidarity as she recognises the widespread economic difficulties people are facing. Considering this, we have taken initiative to seek precisely the amount she has lost due to her inability to work as usual.
Therefore, we call on all of you in solidarity against gendered violence - and subsequent rhetorical attempts to weaponise feminist anti-sexist discourse to reframe the events of this gendered violence - to put some money in the pocket of our friend at this crucial time.
Give what you can and encourage others to do the same.
Once the target £210 is reached we will end this call.
- Leasah Mango
- Freyja Howls