Men urged to speak out in bid to end violence against women in Here and Now campaign - The Solihull Observer

Men urged to speak out in bid to end violence against women in Here and Now campaign

Solihull Editorial 4th May, 2022   0

MEN AND boys across the region are being called on to have important conversations with their peers about male violence against women and girls.

The West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, Simon Foster, has launched the Here and Now campaign asking men to step up and prioritise conversations about playing their part in putting a stop to unacceptable male behaviours.

A survey into women’s safety, commissioned by the PCC and West Midlands Police in 2021, found 80 per cent of women in the region said they had been subject to harassment.

Before Christmas, the PCC launched a campaign – No Excuse for Abuse – asking men to be upstanders for women’s safety, not a bystander to intimidation and violence.

The West Midlands victims’ commissioner, Nicky Brennan, said: “It’s way past time that we talked more openly about male violence against women and girls.

“It’s really important that it’s not something that is treated as taboo or hidden away – it should be talked about in pubs, at the park, on the way to the football – wherever you would normally have a chat.

“For far too long violence against women and girls has been accepted and normalised.

“The simple act of having conversations with your friends, colleagues and family members can help others to understand how certain behaviours and actions can make women feel uncomfortable and scared.

“So, we’re encouraging men to take the time to talk– here, and now.”

The campaign will launch with three videos that will be shared across the region and used in training sessions.

These videos reflect conversations between men of different ages based on feedback from people across the West Midlands about positive interactions they had experienced with male peers.

Mr Foster, said: “We know that men, in particular, haven’t traditionally spoken about these things.

“I can’t remember having these conversations when I was growing up.

“In recent years, there are more men wanting to learn about and discuss this important topic, but there’s still a long way to go, as evidenced by the severe and troubling prevalence of male violence against women and girls.

“What we’re asking men to do is quite simple – have a chat.

“What might seem like a small thing to you may be a transformative moment for someone else.

“We want to work with men across the region to find out what works, what doesn’t, and how we might help remove any obstacles to having these conversations – all with the ultimate aim of preventing and tackling violence against women and girls.”

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