Men take a stand to stop violence against women
LOCAL men next week can take a few steps in Ballina to take a stance to oppose violence against women.
The second annual White Ribbon Day walk will be held on November 25, starting outside the Ballina RSL Club at 10am.
Peter Rawson is a member of the Ballina White Ribbon Committee which has organised the walk.
White Ribbon Day is a male-led campaign which aims to end male violence against women.
About White Ribbon Day
- In 1991 and on the second anniversary of the massacre of 14 women by a lone gunman in Montreal, Canada, a handful of Canadian men initiated a campaign to urge men to speak out about violence against women. The symbol of the campaign was the white ribbon.
- In 1999 the United Nations General Assembly declared November 25 the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. This day is the anniversary of the assassination of the Mirabal sisters - three Dominican political dissidents who opposed the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo.
- In 2003 UNIFEM, now UN Women, establishes the White Ribbon Campaign in Australia. It's now known as White Ribbon Australia.
Mr Rawson said while most men were "non-violent", the statistics of violence against women were shocking.
"In 12 months, on average, one woman is killed every week as a result of intimate partner violence," he said.
"One in three women has experienced physical or sexual violence perpetrated by someone they know."
He said the walk, which kicks off 16 days of activism to stop violence against women, was about changing attitudes and behaviours.
It was an "opportunity for men in Ballina Shire to break the silence about violence against women and make women's safety a men's issue".
And punters at local pubs and clubs will start to see coasters promoting the cause, which have been designed by Alstonville High School students
The White Ribbon Day walk will end at the Ballina Visitor Information Centre.
The organising committee comes under the wing of the Ballina Domestic Violence Liaison Committee.