The United Nations has launched 16 days of action against gender-based violence as part of a campaign to improve the safety of women and girls

Here in Liverpool, Rape and Sexual Abuse Support (RASA) Merseyside have begun their Orange Ribbon campaign, which runs until December 10, and is having a great impact on the community.

The registered charity is placing orange ribbons with a little tag on in public places where women felt unsafe, in order to reclaim those spaces back and feel empowered. They are also encouraging others to do the same.

Earlier this year RASA Merseyside gave out Police Crime Commission surveys to women and girls in the city to find out where they felt most uncomfortable. It was revealed that public spaces were where the majority experienced a problem.

[Listen to Emma Walker from RASA Merseyside talk about the campaign:]

Emma also mentioned that they have a poetry project alongside the Orange Ribbon campaign – this is an open call for poets and artists across the city to give their interpretations of sexual violence which they then share on social media accounts for people to see.

Meanwhile Liverpool Domestic Abuse Service (LDAS) are taking a different approach inspired by Karen Ingala’s article ‘What’s In A Name?’.

On Twitter they are sharing names of all the women on Merseyside who lost their lives to violence at the hands of a male, with the year and where they were from included in the tweets.

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), domestic abuse rose by 6% in England and Wales in the year ending March 2021. It was also found that there was a 22% increase in calls to the National Domestic Abuse Helpline in England over the same period.

Following the increase in attacks against women and girls in the past few weeks, there will be a vigil this Saturday (December 4) at Church Street in remembrance of Ava White and all the other women killed or attacked.

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