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“She is someone”: Lena Dunham and cast of Girls support Stanford rape survivor in powerful new video

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Sarah Biddlecombe
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Lena Dunham and the cast of Girls have voiced their support for the unnamed "brave survivor" of the Stanford rape case in a powerful new video message.

Dunham, along with Jemima Kirke, Allison Williams and Zosia Mamet, use the video to call for increased support for victims of sexual abuse, stating simply that they are "someone".

The clip, which has so far been shared over 12,000 times on Twitter and liked by 15,000, was shared on Dunham's Twitter feed with the message, "I dedicate this to the brave survivor in the Stanford case who has given so much to change the conversation."

"She is someone."

"She is someone."

Last week, Stanford student Brock Turner was given just six months in prison for raping an unconscious woman behind a dumpster. The 20-year-old had originally faced up to 14 years prison, but the judge ruled prison would have "a severe impact on him".

The lenient ruling caused public outcry across the world, leading many to question how our society treats victims of sexual assault and abuse.

And that question became especially relevant when his victim, who has chosen to remain anonymous, released her 7,5000 victim impact statement to BuzzFeed, detailing how her life had been irrevocably changed as a consequence of the rape.

"If you are hoping that one of my organs will implode from anger and I will die, I’m almost there. You are very close," she wrote in the statement, which she read out to Turner in court.

"What he did to me doesn’t expire, doesn’t just go away after a set number of years. It stays with me, it’s part of my identity, it has forever changed the way I carry myself, the way I live the rest of my life."

Brock Turner's mugshot

Brock Turner's mugshot

While the powerful victim statement has already been shared almost 13 million times online, Dunham's video is sure to shine a further light on the importance of supporting, not blaming, victims of sexual abuse.

“We may star on Girls together, but that doesn’t mean we always agree,” says Kirke. “But there is one issue on which we are in total agreement.”

That issue is, of course, providing better support for victims of rape and sexual abuse.

"Why is our default reaction as a society to disbelieve, to silence, to shame?" the women ask.

"What if we chose to turn towards those in need, rather than away?" adds Mamet.

"Why is our default reaction as a society to disbelieve, to silence, to shame?"

"Why is our default reaction as a society to disbelieve, to silence, to shame?"

The four women also quote sobering statistics from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which show one in five women will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime. In 80% of those cases, the perpetrator will be known to the victim.

And here in the UK, one in five women aged 16 - 59 will have experienced some form of sexual violence since the age of 16. Approximately 90% of women raped in the UK will know their perpetrator.

"You already have the power to create a safer, healthier environment for women to come forward," says Williams, as the Girls urge us all to support those in need.

"It could be something as easy as a phone call. Calling out a hurtful remark. Offering a drive to medical care or counselling. It can even be simply listening," they say.

"While it's just the four of us here now, we hope to represent the solidarity and support all survivors should be able to find," they add.

The clip ends with the four women urging us to support, listen and take action for victims of sexual abuse. Not because “she is someone’s daughter, girlfriend or sister”, but because “she is someone”.

You can watch the full video below.

If you or someone you know needs support relating to sexual assault or rape, you can visit Rape Crisis here or Victim Support here