White Ribbon Group Calls on Congleton Men to Become Ambassadors

Following recent events, Congleton’s White Ribbon Group today invited the men of Congleton to stand up against male violence against women.

The alarming situation in Afghanistan sees a whole nation of women potentially being oppressed by the Taliban, and the recent mass murder in Plymouth was committed by a man who had been radicalised and influenced by a group of ‘Incels’ – men who hate women. In Cheshire East, a man was recently convicted for repeatedly sexually assaulting a young woman whilst she had seizures in a care facility where he worked.

In Congleton, there were 68 sexual offences reported in the year to 18th August, a rate of more than one per week. In the same period there were 439 domestic abuse incidents reported to the Police – an average of more than one each day.

The UK Government has published its new Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy, in which the Home Secretary says “Certain crimes disproportionately affect women and girls, manifest themselves in different ways, and demand targeted solutions…We often say these things have no place in our society. It would be more accurate to say that they should have no place, because they are still all too prevalent. They illustrate appalling, often outdated, attitudes and prejudice towards women and girls.”

The government strategy uses the term ‘violence against women and girls’ to refer to acts of violence or abuse that disproportionately affect women and girls. Crimes and behaviour covered by this term include rape and other sexual offences, domestic abuse, stalking, ‘honour’-based abuse, as well as many others, including offences committed online. While the strategy uses the term ‘violence against women and girls’, it points out that this refers to all victims of any of these offences, and the local White Ribbon Group seeks to eradicate all such crimes in Congleton.

In addition Cheshire East has a new Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence Strategy, whose first work stream is to deal with those who harm and implement a comprehensive perpetrator strategy as the only way to create long-term change and prevent re-offending.

The White Ribbon movement is about the prevention of crime by addressing the behaviour of men and boys who might in future become violent. Congleton Town Council is a White Ribbon accredited organisation, and the group is eager to recruit more men to stand up against violence and abuse.

Cllr Robert Hemsley, who chairs the Group in Congleton said: “Not all men are violent, of course, but all men can play a role in eradicating violence. White Ribbon exists to encourage men to call out sexism and unacceptable behaviours, and adopt a zero tolerance approach to the attitudes that can lead to violence and abuse.”

White Ribbon Ambassador Richard Walton adds “We are keen to meet with organisations, sports clubs, pubs and other venues who would like to help stamp out violence and maybe even become White Ribbon accredited themselves.”

The CTC White Ribbon Group has gathered a toolkit of resources and is happy to provide support and advice to anyone who would like to become a White Ribbon Ambassador (men) or Champion (women).

To get involved, email info@Congleton-tc.gov.uk or join the Facebook Group White Ribbon Congleton.

Tony Walley
Tony Walley
News & Sport Editor

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