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NI charity experiences surge in referrals in wake of Hollywood sexual misconduct allegations

Nexus NI said it believes one of the factors for the rise is the 'recent global media storm in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein case'. Picture by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

AN organisation supporting victims of sex abuse has seen a surge in referrals in the wake of Hollywood sexual misconduct allegations.

Nexus NI said it has experienced a 21 per cent increase in the past three months. The charity said it believes one of the factors for the rise is the "recent global media storm in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein case".

Hollywood has been rocked by allegations against the film mogul in recent months, with a large number of women coming forward to say they were sexually harassed or assaulted by Weinstein, which he has denied.

Nexus NI last night said it believes news of the scandal had led to the significant rise in referrals for its specialist counselling service.

Cara Cash from Nexus NI said: "We're seeing more and more stories in the press every day, and the #MeToo hashtag on social media has also sparked conversation around sexual assault both in Northern Ireland and across the globe.

"We see the increase in referrals as a positive step forward as it means that victims of any form of sexual violence are starting to feel that they can seek help.

"Sexual assault can have a lifelong impact on a victim and we want to remind them that it is never their fault.

"They should know they have nothing to be ashamed of and there is strength and hope in seeking help.

"We work hard to make Nexus a safe and trusted source of support for everyone. We are here to support victims of sexual assault no matter who they are, who the perpetrator is or when the assault took place."

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