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Poor Things and Misogynistic Dreams: How Abusers Sexually Mistreat Disabled Women

“A man in Florida was charged last month with sex trafficking a 29-year-old woman whose mental abilities were at the level of a 15-year-old girl. He sold her to men who specifically enjoyed sexual acts with women of diminished intellectual capacity. Abusers seek easy prey. Targeting individuals with vulnerabilities they can exploit is a low-risk, high-profits game. Across the country, cases from GeorgiaMissouriFlorida, California, and around the world, show that women and girls with disabilities bear an increased likelihood of abuse and have a higher prevalence of sexual exploitation than their non-disabled peers.

A 2020 study found that 28% of cases of girls who were sexually trafficked had an intellectual disability compared to the 1-3% of national prevalence. The more severe physical impairment and low cognitive abilities, the higher the risks. Women with intellectual delays also face myriad personal and socio-environmental barriers in their sexual lives, such as difficulties with lack of sexual experience and negative sexual experiences with nondisabled individuals.

This sobering reality is the backdrop to one of the most critically lauded films of the year, Poor Things by Yorgos Lanthimos. Based on the novel by Alasdair GrayPoor Things, earned 11 Oscar nominations and four wins, including Best Actress for Emma Stone […]”


 Read Taina Bien-Aimé’s op-ed in Women’s e-News. 



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