Survivors of domestic abuse, rape and other sexual offences are working with Hackney Council to support a UN campaign against gender-based violence.
Councillors and members of the public gathered outside Hackney Town Hall with orange flags reading “LOVE SHOULDN’T HURT” to launch 16 Days of Activism to End Gender Based Violence.
The theme for this year’s movement is Orange the World: #HearMeToo.
Councillor Rebecca Rennison, cabinet member for domestic abuse, said at the event: “This year we are focusing in particular on the importance of healthy relationships and encouraging people to seek help if they are worried or find themselves in an abusive relationship. Domestic violence is something that will affect us or someone we know at some point in our lives.”
She added: “I can guarantee every single person here will have a friend, family member or work colleague that will have been affected by it.”
The council will host a number of events throughout the 16 days, including a collaboration with research group Resilient and Resisting called Our Stories. The event will give women and girls a platform to share their survival stories of domestic violence, sexual abuse, rape and gendered violence on.
A gender-based violence public consultation is also planned to take place at Hackney Museum next month. The council’s Domestic Abuse Intervention Service is scheduled to speak to local residents to discuss Hackney’s violence against women and girls strategy for the coming year.
There will also be events aimed Hackney’s young residents, like workshops to promote healthy relationships for girls and boys at The Edge Youth Hub.
As part of our #16DaysOfActivism, we joined @hackneycouncil at the launch of their domestic abuse campaign yesterday. We will continue to work with partners to tackle domestic abuse across #London pic.twitter.com/eOe0Ih6PhC
— Metropolitan Police (@metpoliceuk) November 27, 2018
The campaign is a worldwide event which originally started in 1991; it was launched by the first Women’s Global Leadership Institute. In recent years, activists and survivors have shared their stories through campaigns such as #MeToo, #TimesUp, #Niunamenos, #NotOneMore and #BalanceTonPorc.
A joint statement from the heads of UN agencies, UNDP, UNICEF, UN Women and UNFPA, said: “Our duty is not only to stand in solidarity with them but also to intensify our efforts to find solutions and measures to stop this preventable global scourge with a detrimental impact on women’s and girls’ lives and health.
The last year has been extraordinary in terms of the awareness that has been raised on the extent and magnitude of the different forms of violence inflicted on women and girls. The #MeToo campaign—one of the most viral and powerful social movements of recent times—has brought this issue into the spotlight.”
This year’s campaign will run from November 25 – the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women – to December 10: Human Rights Day.
You can contact Hackney Council’s Domestic Abuse Intervention Service anonymously and get help to stop abusive behaviour on 020 8356 4458; email firstname.lastname@example.org. Anyone needing help or support can also contact the 24-hour free national helpline on 0808 2000 247. In an emergency always call 999.