It is a sad reality, but the victims of aggressive behavior are many. This is also evident from figures from Sensoa, the experience center for sexual health. 64 percent of people ages 16 to 69 have experienced sexually opposite behavior at some point in their lives.
This concerns four out of five women and one in two men. High numbers shock you. They come from the UN-MENAMAIS study, the first study of abusive sexual behavior in Belgium that is representative of all genders and ages.
It is often difficult for those affected to talk about this. “It’s in the realm of their personal lives,” Annelies D’Espallier of The Flemish Oombuds Service answers in an interview with VRT. “They have to set their boundaries and that is very difficult, because a lot often depends on it, such as the job or the future. It is difficult for organizations to communicate about it because they know that they need to do better in this area, but they do not always know the way. They They are afraid that things will explode in their faces, because these kinds of reports can cause some fireworks in public opinion.”
To encourage people to talk about it anyway, the Flemish Ombudsman service is releasing a trailer for the fictional movie “Doesn’t Exist”. The photos feature director Hans Herbuts, actors Water Hendrix and Natalie Broads.
They say the movie is based on true events, and a case of infringing behavior, but the movie never materialized. The reason: “The story never got to us, because the people involved never wanted to talk about it,” Herbots explains. “There is absolutely no movie, because the main character didn’t dare come up with it,” adds Hendrix.
So the message is clear, and the Flemish Ombudsman Service hopes to support people in telling their story of infringing behaviour. The campaign has an astonishing timing, as Jan Fabre’s trial will begin this month in the Antwerp Assize Court. The Belgian artist has previously been accused in an open letter of aggressive behavior by 20 (former) employees and trainees.