Lisa Wilkinson knows what it’s like to feel unsafe on our streets.
In the wake of Eurydice Dixon’s rape and murder, The Project host delivered a powerful message about rape culture and victim blaming in Australia.
“If you’re a woman in 2018, you’ll be familiar with this advice,” Wilkinson said.
“There’s so much advice and so many rules about what we should do and what we shouldn’t, it’s hard to keep track of just how we should keep ourselves safe.”
“If one woman doesn’t walk at night, that one woman won’t be attacked. But the problem with giving this advice is that it keeps that one woman safe at the expense of all women’s right to move freely,” she said.
Lisa Wilkinson’s powerful message about rape culture…
Now Wilkinson, 58, has told Confidential she “feels unsafe often” and carries an item with her everyday, in an effort to feel safer.
“When I was parking at the supermarket the other night, it was 11 o’clock and I was going to park in a spot that was really convenient but it was dark so I went to a spot that was further away with a lot more lighting.
“I got out of the car, I had my keys splayed between my fingers and I have a whistle on my key ring.
“I’ve never had to use it but this is all about that one moment when you might be the one that gets picked, because every single one of those women whose names we know like Eurydice Dixon — all of those women were chosen at random.”
During her emotional speech on The Project, Wilkinson suggested that instead of telling women to take responsibility for their safety, we should be talking to men and boys instead.
“The best way to prevent this crime and keep all women safe isn’t by changing the behaviour of women but by changing the behaviour of men,” she said.
“Instead of telling girls not to walk through parks, maybe we should tell our boys not to rape them.”
Wilkinson also opened up about her fears for her 20-year-old university student daughter.
“Every time she has to walk across campus, if it’s later at night, she calls me, and I’ve always said to her, ‘Call me at any time so that you can feel safe’ because we’ve had the discussion,” she said.