Council-backed White Ribbon to combat gender violence

Croydon council cabinet members at White Ribbon Launch. Pic: Haley Lewis

Croydon council cabinet members at White Ribbon Launch. Pic: Haley Lewis

A campaign to combat violence against women was adopted by Croydon Council last night.

The year-long White Ribbon initiative will start with 16 days of campaigning from November 25 to December 10.

Croydon Council opted into the campaign, which aims to mobilise men in the fight against gender-based violence, at its cabinet meeting on November 17.

Providing protection and psychosocial support for victims of domestic abuse costs the council up to £16 million, according to Cabinet member Mark Watson, who presented the campaign to the council.

The council is already working with private business owners, staff at sports and education facilities and representatives of religious groups and migrants to put together an action plan for the 16-day campaign.

Watson said: “The White Ribbon campaign is particularly about men taking responsibility to violence against women. Most perpetrators are men and most victims are women. This is really about changing attitudes across the borough. We really want to start moving away from managing domestic abuse to actually changing the whole attitudes towards it.”

Croydon Council hopes to join 40 other authorities that have previously won the White Ribbon Campaign Town Award.

The award is given annually to councils that demonstrate a commitment to engaging communities in condemning violence against women.

The White Ribbon Campaign is a global campaign starting on November 25 each year to coincide with the United Nations’ international day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. It was launched in 1991 by a group of men in Canada in protest against the shooting of 14 female students at the University of Montreal.

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