white ribbon campaignAndrew Gwynne MP has backed a global campaign to ensure men take more responsibility for reducing the level of violence against women.

He joined Ikram Butt, the only Muslim to have represented England at Rugby League, who is also one of White Ribbon campaign’s busiest ambassadors. He played for Leeds and Castleford, before working for Connecting Communities. In his autobiography ‘Tries and Prejudice’ he talks of the vital need to bring communities together.

The White Ribbon Campaign (WRC) is the UK branch of the global campaign. They encourage reflection and discussion that leads to personal and collective action amongst men.

Throughout the year, they encourage men to do educational work in schools, workplaces and communities, to support local women’s groups, and to raise money for the international educational efforts of the WRC. They also distribute Education and Action kits to schools, colleges and youth clubs, maintain a website, and speak out on issues of public policy.

Andrew Gwynne MP said:

“It is vital that men are fully aware of the horrendous way women are treated across the world, and so it is crucial that men face up to the issue and make it clear that violence is never acceptable.

“But the problem does not stop with physical violence. There are forms of emotional violence, like sexist joking, sexual harassment at work, to other domineering forms of behaviour. By remaining silent about these things, we allow other men to poison our working and learning environments.”

Chris Green, Chair of the White Ribbon Campaign UK, said:

“Parliamentarians enter parliament in order to make their community a better place.

“There is no more important way to do this than by working to eliminate violence against women. Yet because of the over representation of men in every Parliament in Europe, it is vital for individual male parliamentarians to be involved in order for change to take place.”

Every year, MPs across the political spectrum take part in White Ribbon Day (November 25th), a day which is also recognised as the United Nations’ International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

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