By Nadine White
A charity which offers specialist assistance to black and minority ethnic victims of sexual abuse said it has received a barrage of racist abuse following a Facebook post by a right-wing activist.
Sharing a photograph of a Rape Crisis flyer which offers the service for BAME women, Tommy Robinson wrote on Facebook: “I guess it’s ok to rape white women then??!?!?!” to his one million followers.
This prompted an outpouring of criticism from other online users, many of whom accused the service of “reverse racism”.
A Rape Crisis spokesperson told HuffPost UK the hotline had received a “significant volume of abusive phone calls, messages and emails, many of which are of an overtly racist nature”.
The organisation said it had informed the police of the abuse.
“These activities have disrupted much-needed service provision for victims and survivors of sexual violence and abuse of all ethnicities and backgrounds,” the spokesperson added.
The registered charity offers free and confidential support services to all survivors of sexual violence and abuse.
It also offers the specialist service for BAME women who can encounter unique barriers to accessing help and support, including language issues and the fear of racial discrimination.
A woman who exposed the abuse of the hotline described the post and subsequent vitriol as “disgusting”, adding that it was “deplorable Mr Robinson didn’t remove the post.”
Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, founded the English Defence League, a far-right and Islamophobic group.
His YouTube channel was suspended last month for posting what the site said was derogatory and disparaging content which breached its advertising guidelines.