Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 30 July 2014

Men 'must speak out against abuse'

An anti-domestic violence group is encouraging men to speak out against it

Men have to stand up and speak out to end domestic violence against women and children, it has been claimed.

A support group working with perpetrators of abuse backed an international campaign to stop attacks against women in the home.

Move (Men Overcoming Violence) hopes that participating in the 16 Days of Action on Violence Against Women will help more men to speak out against domestic violence.

Artist Robert Ballagh, who backed the campaign, said it was important for men to stand up and articulate their opposition to violence against women.

"Everyone should be opposed to violence in all its forms, particularly domestic violence," said Mr Ballagh.

"There are increasing risks for this to occur as people are put under more and more pressure in an economy that's declining and people grow frustrated. Violence can often be an outcome from frustration and anger."

Move Ireland runs eight volunteer-led groups around the country which run domestic violence prevention programmes.

Thomas Bibby, national development officer for Move Ireland, said the commitment of the volunteers in tackling the cause of violence against women is vital in tackling the epidemic of domestic violence.

"We believe domestic violence happens because we live in a society that accepts man's controlling behaviour and their right to control," he said. "There is a huge amount of work still to do."

The White Ribbon Campaign was created by a handful of Canadian men in 1991 on the second anniversary of one man's massacre of 14 women in Montreal. Within week as many as 100,000 men across Canada wore a white ribbon as a symbol of their opposition to men's violence against women.

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