White Ribbon Day (25 November 2022) is a widely recognised global movement in the UK, spearheaded by White Ribbon UK, the leading charity engaging men and boys to end violence against women and girls (VAWG)
The International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women is immediately followed by 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, a UN Women campaign, which runs until 10 December 2022.
Southampton City Council will be raising awareness and encouraging male behaviour and attitude change towards women in the following ways:
- Friday 25 November: Southampton City Council will be attending a Police and Crime Commissioner event with partners of the VAWG Task group to reflect on the first year of the partnership and consider areas of focus for the next 12 months. Please note this is not a public event
- Sunday 27 November: Promoting the White Ribbon Promise to ‘Never use, excuse or remain silent about men’s violence against women’ at the Saints Women FC match at Saint Mary’s Stadium from 12pm-2pm with partner support service providers. Supported by the Southampton Ukulele Jam
- Friday 25 November: Flying the White Ribbon Flag outside of the Civic Centre until 10 December
- Tuesday 29 November: Joining Stop Domestic Abuse on the Southampton leg of its 11 one-mile walks. These depict the women or girls killed every 11 minutes in their home*
- Friday 2 December: Public engagement event at Westquay (South) from midday to raise awareness of traits that men and boys can nurture to help create a world of equality and safety for women and girls
Councillor Matt Renyard, Cabinet Member for a Safer City comments:
"Keeping people safe from harm is one of three key priorities for the Safe City Partnership. A joint domestic abuse and violence against women and girls’ strategy has recently been developed to tackle gender-based violence and to support the victims and survivors of violence and abuse, showing our commitment to this national issue.
"As major partner in delivering the city’s response, we work closely with other agencies and communities to help people access the appropriate support services. We know there is more to do, and men and boys can make a difference. White Ribbon Day and the 16 Days of Action, provides an opportunity for people be more aware of their own behaviours and attitudes and call out harmful or inappropriate behaviour when they see it."
Southampton City Council is committed to strengthening support for victims of domestic abuse, to tackle violence against women and girls and reduce reoffending by:
- Commissioning the PIPPA helpline which offers confidential advice, information and support for professionals and victims experiencing domestic abuse, or worried about their behaviour
- Being Domestic Abuse Housing Alliance (DAHAA) accredited, with a number of staff acting as Domestic Abuse champions
- Delivering a SafeLives accredited 'Leading Light' Independent Domestic Violence Advisory (IDVA) service for high risk victims
- Implementing a Safe and Together child welfare model within Children’s Services, recognising the impact that domestic abuse has on children
- Continuing to support multi-agency working to change negative gender behaviours with young people through the Yellow Door outreach programmes and the STAR+ programme
- Bidding for further funding that will help to continue projects that reduce VAWG in public spaces (including the night-time economy) and increase feelings of safety
Earlier this year, Southampton City Council hosted a citywide conference with key partners to promote a co-ordinated approach and a unified understanding of the issue to help make Southampton a safer place for women and girls as well as shaping the strategic response. This resulted in the creation of a Domestic Abuse and Violence Against Women Strategy, on behalf of the Safe City Partnership which has recently been through a public consultation.
Anthea Sully, Chief Executive of White Ribbon UK, shared:
"This year, White Ribbon Day is focusing on the attitudes and behaviours men and boys can adopt to move away from associations to violent and abusive behaviour. Men and boys are now expecting better from their colleagues, friends, and family to ensure women and girls are safe.
"We are inviting you to wear a White Ribbon and make the White Ribbon Promise, never to use, excuse or remain silent about men’s violence against women."
She continued, "This year, White Ribbon Day falls on the same week as the launch of the FIFA men’s World Cup. There is never a better time for us to focus on the good that can come from unifying and supporting one common cause. #TheGoal does just that, it brings men and boys together to think about how they can make a positive difference to achieve equality and safety for women and girls."
We can all make a commitment today by making the White Ribbon Promise never to use, excuse or remain silent about men’s violence against women.
This is an opportunity for all our colleagues and partners to stand up to men’s violence against women and girls.
If you are experiencing abuse or are hurting someone you love, there is help available. PIPPA: 023 8091 7917, will be able to provide you with initial guidance and support and signpost you as needed.