|Running annually from the November 25 to December 10, the White Ribbon campaign aims to stop domestic violence against women.
By wearing a white ribbon, supporters can make it clear that domestic violence and abuse against women should never be condoned.
And in a bid to raise awareness of the issues, and the support, advice and help available, police and partner agencies will be carrying out a number of events and activities over the next few weeks.
Suffolk Constabulary has teamed up with Suffolk County Council, Ipswich Town Football Club (ITFC), Suffolk Sport, BBC Radio Suffolk and Suffolk Football Association to support the campaign.
Suffolk Constabulary has issued 1,000 white ribbons for officers and staff to wear to show support and further raise awareness of this key campaign.
A White Ribbon stand will be staffed by police and NHS in the outpatients department at Ipswich Hospital next week on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, November 27, 28 and 30, and also the following week on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, December 4, 5 and 7, offering advice and information to the public alongside hospital employees. The stand was also at the FanZone at Ipswich Town Football Club prior to a football match on Wednesday, November 22.
In addition, the force is working with Suffolk Police UNISON branch, Suffolk Association of Women in Policing and the Suffolk Police Federation to raise awareness of the campaign internally by hosting a number of roadshow events which will provide information, leaflets and advice.
It’s thought 35% of women and girls globally experience some form of physical or sexual violence in their lifetime. Here in Suffolk some women face the threat of daily violence from their partner – and men are victims too.
Anyone can suffer from domestic abuse or sexual violence – age, gender, social status, race or religion are no barrier. It’s still thought domestic abuse is vastly under-reported as it occurs behind closed doors and is often hidden from anyone but the victim and perpetrator.
Detective Superintendent Eamonn Bridger, Head of Protecting Vulnerable People Directorate, said, “White Ribbon is opportunity to work with other organisations, to raise awareness of domestic abuse and violence, sending a strong message that it will not be tolerated or condoned in any way.
“We also know that dealing effectively with domestic abuse requires concerted multi-agency working. I am proud to say that lots of excellent work is already being done in this area and our joined up partner approach is making a difference to help keep victims and their families safer. Anybody can be affected by domestic abuse and we do not underestimate how difficult it can be for people to speak out about being a victim. You are not alone – help is a phone call away.”
Suffolk Police & Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore said: “To date I have commissioned over £1.7m of services to support victims of Domestic Abuse which includes providing Independent Domestic Violence Advisors and counselling, this is a key priority for me as Police and Crime Commissioner. It is crucially important that victims have the confidence and support they need to report domestic violence and I hope the focus of the White Ribbon campaign will give those suffering abuse the confidence to speak out.”
The national campaign can be followed at @WhiteRibbon_UK or locally by following @SuffolkFA or @SaferSuffolk.
For help and advice you can contact police by dialling 101, or the national domestic violence helpline on 0808 2000 247 www.nationaldomesticviolencehelpline.org.uk or visit our website www.suffolk.police.uk/advice/assault-abuse-threats/domestic-abuse
Are you a victim of domestic violence and abuse? Call the 24-hour National Domestic Violence Freephone Helpline 0808 2000 24
Are you hurting the one you love? Choose to stop. The Respect Phone line 0808 802 4040
If you believe there is an immediate risk of harm to someone, or a crime is in progress always call Police 999.
Pictured above, left to right, are Martyn Waghorn, Mick McCarthy, Assistant Chief Constable Rachel Kearton, Luke Chambers and Detective Superintendent Eamonn Bridger.