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Men on high heels about serious issue

Worcester Editorial 20th Nov, 2013 Updated: 19th Oct, 2016

MALE bravado is set to go out of the window tomorrow (Thursday) when a group of men totter around in high heels to highlight a serious issue.

The walk, which starts at Worcester College of Technology, is part of the national White Ribbon campaign, which is encouraging people to sign a pledge promising to never commit, condone or remain silent about domestic abuse and sexual violence in all its forms.

The campaign, which officially gets underway on Monday (November 25), aims to raise awareness of violence against both men and women.

Jude Langton, community safety manager at Worcester City Council, organised tomorrow’s event in partnership with the college of technology.

“Obviously I can’t wait to see our lads struggling around Worcester streets in their heels, but it’s not just about gloating – there’s a really serious point here.

“One in four women and one in six men will experience domestic abuse during their lifetime and if this event encourages more people to take a stand against it, that’s a great thing.”

The Worcestershire Forum Against Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence has also pledged its support to a campaign which launches on White Ribbon Day.

The 16 Days of Action, which runs from Monday (November 25) until Tuesday, December 10, is an international event which aims to end violence against women.

Martin Lakeman, strategic co-ordinator for The Forum, said: “The 16 Days of Action was originally launched in Canada in 1991.

“The dates are symbolic in that November 25 is International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and December 10 is International Human Rights Day.

“It’s an important event as it helps to highlight what can be done to tackle violence against men, women and children at a local level, supported by events and activities throughout the world.”

While The 16 Days of Action campaign nationally is focused on ending violence against women and girls and is directed at men, Mr Lakeman said The Forum wanted to eliminate violence against all sexes and recognised it has devastating effects on women, men and children.

On Monday Worcester’s Poet Laureate, Holly-Anne Perrett, and representatives from the Worcester Wolves, students, staff, the Mayor of Worcester Pat Agar, High Sheriff Nicholas Wentworth-Stanley and his wife Millie, Suzanne Oldnall from Parkinson Wright Solicitors and Martin Lakemen will assemble at The University at 11.30am, to officially launch the campaign followed by Deputy Lieutenant Lady Susanne McFarlane visiting The Glade in Bransford – home to the SARC – The Sexual Assault Referral Centre – to tie a ribbon around the tree that Lord Lieutenant Lady Darnley planted 12 months ago.

Tomorrow’s walk at the College of Technology starts at 5.30pm and anyone who wants to take part can contact Jude on 01905 722321 or simply turn up on the night.

To make a pledge to stand up to domestic violence, go to www.whiteribboncampaign.co.uk/worcestershire.

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