CALD communities a focus of White Ribbon campaign
Organisers of White Ribbon Day have pledged to focus on the support and education of culturally diverse communities within Australia as part of the annual event, which raises awareness of family and domestic violence.
‘Diversity’ has been added to the list of specified programs that also target schools, youth and workplaces in educating about violence against women.
These programs involve events that provide resources and tools that have been tailored to the needs of specific groups, empowering men and women from all backgrounds to end domestic violence.
The targeting of education for culturally diverse people enables barriers to be broken down and provides opportunities for individuals to positively represent their communities.
The White Ribbon Campaign is led by male ambassadors who understand the importance of men taking responsibility in preventing men’s violence against women.
WA White Ribbon Ambassador Mr Andre De Barr believes that the strength of the campaign lies in acknowledging how most domestic violence against women is carried out by men.
“Men’s violence against women is not just a women’s issue—it’s a social issue and also a men’s issue because it is their wives, sisters, daughters and friends whose lives are being harmed by violence and abuse,” Mr De Barr said.
“We base the elements of each year’s White Ribbon campaign focus on social research conducted with men—a series of focus groups and research work helps us to determine what key messaging will best engage men and deliver traction in the campaign.”
In 2016 there are plans to create more primary prevention initiatives through awareness raising in culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities.
“We are actively looking to engage CALD communities and encourage more men to become advocates and ambassadors and take a leadership role in the workplace, including schools and the general community,” Mr De Barr said.
“A Diversity Program will join the current White Ribbon programs that work to raise awareness of the origins and effects domestic violence, and change male behaviour.
“These include programs for the workplace, universities and schools, as well as a program for ambassadors and advocates.”
The White Ribbon campaign, which originated in Canada in 1991, is now active in over 60 countries and is Australia’s only national male-led campaign to end men’s violence against women.
“We have built a campaign to deliver the message that good men have got your back and are making a difference to Australian society.”
AMES Australia Staff Writer