Aware of violence

21 November 2014

IT SEEMS an appalling statistic, but research suggests that between a quarter and a half of all women in the UK experience domestic violence. On 29 November, St Edward the Confessor, at Dringhouses, York, is hosting a day to raise awareness of the issue, when there will be guest speakers to provide information about the prevalence of such violence, and about the White Ribbon campaign.

"I've been a vicar in York for 14 years now," the Revd Martin Baldock (right), of St Edward's, says. "In that time, I've heard people's stories that have shocked me to the core. Violence against women happens more than you think, in the UK and across the world. It has been hidden in this country, and needs naming and tolerating no longer.

"I'm delighted that York is starting to wake up to the problem . . . with the city's bus-advertisement campaign against domestic violence and the city's receipt of White Ribbon status in May. But that's not enough. All men in this city need to learn more about the extent of violence against women, to sign the pledge to never condone it, and to wear a white ribbon."

"Silence is not an option, and ignorance is no excuse," the director of the White Ribbon campaign UK, Chris Green, says. The campaign, originally started by a group of men, now has the support of Christian organisations, including the Mothers' Union, which offers an action pack that may be downloaded from its website.

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