I was a victim, too. I am a 27 year old woman and decided to start this petition, because I have experienced what it means when the law is used unfairly.
The German criminal code says that abuse is punished with up to 10 years of freedom penalty - but under what conditions?
Officially, there are about 14,000 cases of child abuse in Germany every year. It is assumed that only about every 15th to 20th abuse is reported, of which every fifth case comes to trial, i.e. only about 1% of abuse cases go to court. The number of actual cases is therefore about 300,000 per year (source: Wikipedia).
You can find several cases where the offenders had to pay money and got on probation. Just because they confess. But a confession does not change what has happened to the victims!
I was sexually absused over 6 years by my stepfather, of course he confessed and never had to see a prison. To me this sounds like a huge mistake in our society. Is it because I was a child? Or because I was not raped? So the court thinks a child can not understand what has happened?
But all of them will get older and they will never be able to forget what they had to experience. You only learn how to get along with it - however it will change them. It will change their view of relationships, life, justice and even themselves.
Most of them - so did I - get on the wrong track. Children's home, drugs, bad and vile jobs, countless therapies, fake friends, violence, partners that made me feel like I was worthless. As a result I ended up in jail. And why? Because I could not pay a fine. Ridiculous due to the fact that my tormentor was free and able to live without a guilty conscience. I am not trying to make him responsible for my mistakes but how can you expect me to live a normal life without justice?
Too many victims break down under all this pressure, do the same mistakes as I, some of them even take their lives. I can totally understand that because it is not fair to see how your life is destroyed by a man that never got a punishment.
I want to give confidence to all of you that had to go through hell. Don't be silent - speak up! Maybe together we can make a change and open the eyes of the german law system.
My goal is to change the german laws concerning sexual abuse. I want to show the affected people that they are not alone and that our law system is on their side.