Friday, February 08, 2008

How about this for a horror story?

I dont think anything has given me that feeling of cold horror in my heart recently as this extract below:

A few weeks ago, I was chatting to a woman who works in an advocacy role for Muslim women in an area that, quite independently of the Bishop of Rochester, she described as a 'no-go area' for non-Muslims. Her clients were women in the process of being sectioned into mental health units in the NHS. This woman, who for obvious reasons begged not to be identified, told me: 'The men get tired of their wives. Or bored. Or maybe the wife objects to her daughter being forced into a marriage she doesn't want. Or maybe she starts wearing western clothes.There can be many reasons. The women are sent for asssessment to a hospital. The GP referring them is Muslim. The psychiatrist assessing them is Muslim and male. I have sat in these assessments where the psychiatrist will not look the woman patient in the eye because she is a woman. Can you imagine! A psychiatrist refusing to look his patient in the eye? The woman speaks little or no English. She is sectioned. She is divorced. There are lots of these women in there, locked up in these hospitals. Why don't you people write about this?'

I understand that not all Muslims (or indeed Hindus or Sikhs) are as cold-blooded as that... but to think of women being put into mental institutions for no fault of theirs, with no way of establishing their sanity during the process, or getting back out into the world - I thought that sort of thing had gone out with the Middle Ages! How truly awful that such things can happen in the supposedly free West - that such things can be ALLOWED to happen without interference from the authorities, perhaps for fear of offending that religious community. Of what use the long and hard fight for equality and rights for women, when they are unable to help themselves or be helped? And we're talking about women in the UK, not in Saudi Arabia.

4 comments:

meerkat said...

these are basically ghettos and people in there can spend their entire lives not meeting a single white person and not speaking a word of english.

all this allowed to happen in the name of multiculturalism and tolerance. there is nothing like a bit of tolerance to keep the intolerant getting stronger

that anecdote feels like a script from a horror movie and the muslim community seem like the mafia with their tentacles in every avenue of life. you can run but you cannot escape.

meera

Shyam said...

I guess that's true. Such a shame that tolerance should encourage intolerance in the tolerated!

Dammit. That is depressing.

Teesu said...

Please. I won't even GET into a discussion on this. Find it that depressing and am STILL creeped out from 'Not without my daughter' and the likes. Thank God and anyone else responsible that I am ...not one of them.

Nav said...

Yeah, agreee with you, yet another horror story. Look at this, I couldn't believe such a thing happens in a developed world and in a christian sect: http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/womanshour/03/2008_04_mon.shtml