‘More men should take the lead in eliminating violence against women’

A Welsh government minster has called on more men to get involved and take action in helping reduce violence against women.

Jane Hutt told CJS News that too many women are “nervous on the streets of Cardiff” and that “men need to take the lead”.

The Senedd hosted a candlelight vigil last night in support of White Ribbon Day, an international campaign that encourages people to take a stand against violence targeting women and girls.

Too many women are nervous on the streets of Cardiff

MS Jane Hutt

Hundreds walked through Cardiff Bay holding candles to remember the lives lost to gender-based violence, but also to demand change.

Jane Hutt MS speaking at the Vigil

Jane Hutt urged men to help “change this narrative” and destabilise the normality of harassment, abuse and violence against women.

Jane Hutt added that as Cardiff is Wales’ capital “we have a responsibility to address this and make it a White Ribbon city”.

When asked what the government is doing to eradicate gender-based violence, she said that the Welsh Curriculum “teaches boys to respect girls from a very early age throughout their learning” and that the government has introduced legislation that invests £6 million into specialist services to tackle this issue.

MS Joyce Watson organised the event alongside the NFWI-Wales (National Federation of Women’s Institutes) and reinforced that “the key message is it’s not your fault”.

When listing the women that were killed by men in Cardiff, she reminded the audience that “these aren’t just names, these are women”.

One woman has been killed by a man, on average, once every three days, in England and Wales according to the Femicide Census.

MS Luke Fletcher also argued that violence “starts with us and must end with us” as he encouraged men to “check their mates when jokes go too far”.

Monday’s event marks the beginning of the sixteen days of activism against gender-based violence that will continue throughout Wales and the rest of the world.

If you are a victim of abuse and need support call 0808 2000 247 or visit the ‘End Violence Against Women’ website at www.endviolenceagainstwomen.org.uk/find-help/ or Welsh Women’s Aid www.welshwomensaid.org.uk/.