Over the next four weeks, Humberside Fire and Rescue Service are continuing their support for an initiative which gives children across Hull the opportunity to discuss and explore domestic abuse, bullying and understanding respectful, healthy relationships.
Planned activities at 25 Hull schools are centred around the theme ‘these hands are not for hurting’. Children and young people can then sign the White Ribbon pledge:
‘I pledge never to commit, excuse, or stay silent about abuse or bullying’.
In the eight years since Hull became a White Ribbon city, agencies across Hull have been working together closely to raise awareness and support victims of domestic abuse.
Nationally it is estimated 1.6 million women experience domestic abuse every year and that around 618,000 where women were victims of sexually assaulted. 892,000 women experienced stalking. (ONS)
44% of children in families where domestic abuse is happening were also directly abused and 91% of children were exposed to domestic abuse (Safelives)
In Hull, Humberside Police respond to between 850 and 950 calls for service every month due to domestic abuse. Between April 2020 and March 2021 Hull DAP, Domestic Abuse Partnership Support Service supported 2492 women and their children.
How to show your support
To support the campaign and raise awareness and tackle domestic abuse locally the city applied for and was successful in gaining White Ribbon City status in February 2015. Since this time partners agencies from across the city have worked together to raise awareness of abuse to women and girls through white ribbon campaign activities.
25 November is International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Girls and is also White Ribbon day and starts 16 days of action through to 10 December Human Rights Day.
Anyone who is passionate about this cause is encouraged to pledge their support at https://www.whiteribbon.org.uk...
Chief Fire Office Phil Shillito has been delighted with the part the Fire Service has played in the campaign locally:
“Humberside Fire and Rescue Service is committed to doing all it can to end domestic violence in any shape or form.
“Our crews and Public Safety teams deal with some of society’s most vulnerable people, and we work with partner agencies to not only look for fire risks, but to recognise abuse in all of its forms whether it be drugs or alcohol or even violence in the home.
“The wrapped engine was launched five years ago and has been seen by thousands of people across the area. The TRV is a stand in for a few months until we wrap a new engine with this important message. It has helped to highlight this issue and hopefully start more conversations and signpost those who witness or suffer domestic violence to receive the support they deserve.”
The White Ribbon campaign was created by men and is aimed at men, to ensure that they take more responsibility for reducing levels of abuse against women. It focuses on the belief that change will only occur when men accept their responsibility to make changes.
The White Ribbon campaign recognises that men can be victims of domestic abuse. This campaign, however, is focused on male violence towards women as this is the predominant picture nationally and locally in Hull, with more than 81% of victims being women. Hull City Council employs a dedicated men’s worker who supports male victims of domestic abuse. Any activity to raise awareness of domestic abuse will increase awareness and practice for all victims.
By wearing a white ribbon, a man makes a personal pledge never to commit, excuse or remain silent about violence against women.