Undercover investigation into child sexual abuse in Second Life

October 30, 2007

Channel 5 and Sky News journalist Jason Farrell reports today on an investigation he has carried out into Second Life and the proliferation of child sexual abuse and rape in this virtual world. This article includes an online video report with footage from Second Life – the full report will be shown on Five News at 5.30pm and 7pm tonight.

The article also links to another Sky News story about the launch today of a new DVD – Matters2Me. It incorporates real examples of child abuse into an imaginary cartoon world in order to address this issue and inform children.

It is more important than ever now that the White Ribbon Campaign has a presence in Second Life and fights against these representations of rape and sexual violence. Our feminist friends are helping to build a space for us there – you can use this SLurl to go directly to the White Ribbon area in Second Life. To join the group, log in to Second Life, search for “White Ribbon” under “Groups” and sign up! Thanks for your support.


Support the Statement of Intent 2007

October 26, 2007

The Women’s Coalition – The Zero Tolerance Charitable Trust, Scottish Women’s Aid, Rape Crisis Scotland, Engender and The Women’s Support Project – is gathering support for the Statement of Intent 2007 and invites you to put pressure on your MSP to become a signatory.

As the new administration finds its feet, now is the time to ensure that the issue of violence against women is not sidelined. The Coalition is greatly encouraged by the First Minister’s recent announcement to continue work to bring in new legislation that will address the low percentage of rape convictions in Scotland. However, many more change sstill need to take place so that we can progress towards a new Scotland where women and children can live free from fear.

Frontline services such as Women’s Aid and Rape Crisis groups (historically over-stretched and under-funded) have benefited from national funding streams such as the Violence Against Women Fund and the Rape Crisis Specific Fund. These funds have significantly expanded the services available to women and children across Scotland. It is vital that this work continues if we are to achieve the goal of ultimately ending violence against women.

White Ribbon Scotland supports the statement; you can also make a difference as an individual. By asking your MSP to support the Statement of Intent 2007 your will be asking the new Scottish Government: –

• For the continued provision of funding to violence against women projects to ensure the continuation of essential service provision to women and children experiencing violence.

• For the continued development of strategic work on violence against women, guided by the multi-agency National Group on Violence Against Women and enabled by the Violence Against Women Team within the Equality Unit at the Scottish Government.

• To commit to changing public attitudes and behaviours through education initiatives and public awareness campaigns.

• For the adoption of a broad definition of violence against women, which makes the links between domestic abuse, rape and commercial sexual exploitation.

• To Ensure effective legal protection for women and children experiencing violence.

You can find out more from Zero Tolerance, including links to the E-Petition, and also join the Facebook Group!

Find out who your local MSP is from the Scottish Parliament site – get lobbying!

Men Against Violence Against Women conference – 6th December 07 – Hamilton, Scotland

October 22, 2007

A conference organised by Doorway, South Lanarkshire Partnership on Domestic Abuse and Violence Against Women

6th December 07
Banqueting Hall, Council HQ, Almada Street, Hamilton

Men’s partners, friends, sisters and daughters lives are damaged by violence and abuse. The aim of the conference is to examine why violence against women is also a men’s issue. Men can help create a culture where the behaviour of a minority, who treat women with abuse or violence, becomes unacceptable.


9.30am Registration
9.45am Introduction and Welcome (South Lanarkshire Councillor, Jim Handibode; Mairi Brackenridge, Chair of Doorway)
10.00am Mark Ward, Men’s Health Forum Scotland
10.15am Na’eem Raza, Meem Consultancy
10.30am Break
10.45am Chris Green, White Ribbon Campaign
11.00am Rory Macrae, Working with Men
11.15am Workshops
12.15 pm Closing remarks
12.30 pm LUNCH and opportunity to view exhibition ‘104 Pairs of Shoes’


I would have spoken at this conference but I’m going to be in Hong Kong (!) on this date, so Chris Green from White Ribbon UK has kindly stepped in.

To book a place, please contact Chris Bush, Resource Worker, Doorway

Email: chris.bush@southlanarkshire.gov.uk
Address: Doorway, 1st Floor, 4 Barrack Street, Hamilton ML3 ODG

Launch of Rape Crisis Scotland national helpline

October 17, 2007

The launch of the new Rape Crisis Scotland National Helpline took place on Thursday 11th October 2007.

The National Helpline is for anyone affected by sexual violence, no matter when or how it happened. It is open from 6pm to midnight, 7 days a week, offers free and confidential initial and crisis support and information. The helpline can also put people in touch with local rape crisis centres or other services for ongoing support. The helpline offers a minicom service for Deaf or hard of hearing people, and can arrange for language interpreters for callers whose first language is not English.

The freephone National Helpline number (voice and minicom) is: 08088 01 03 02

STV report – watch video online
Glasgow Evening Times article

Rape Crisis Scotland national helpline poster

Reclaim the Night in Edinburgh was a great success

October 16, 2007

I’ve been so busy doing White Ribbon stuff recently that I’ve had no time to write about it!

There was excellent publicity leading up to the Reclaim the Night march, including a piece in the Edinburgh Evening News , an article by Rebecca from the Edinburgh Feminist Network [EFN] in the F-Word and a radio interview we (me, Sandy Brindley from Rape Crisis Scotland and 2 members of the EFN) did for Good Morning Scotland on the BBC. I managed to capture the audio online so I will post it here when I have more time.

On Sunday 7th October, there was a film screening event at the Cameo cinema organised in conjunction with the March. I spoke a bit about White Ribbon before the films and the EFN talked about the March and the significance of these films. The films were excellent – Fire and Volver. It was a great opportunity to meet with the EFN and talk about the upcoming march and the men’s discussion group. The event was sold out and there was a good public response to the information stand and publicity for the March.

On Thursday 11th October I travelled through to Edinburgh for the March. We held a Men’s Discussion Group for an hour before the march set off. In the end about 10-15 people turned up and it was great to have a chance to talk about a wide range of issues relating to men’s violence against women. We focused particularly on what men can do to get more involved. To my delight several members of the group decided there and then to form a White Ribbon Edinburgh group and to meet again next week. So if anyone would like to go along, the meeting will be upstairs in the Wash Bar on The Mound from 7.30pm onwards on Thursday 18th October.

We then joined the Reclaim the Night March which had come from Lothian Road, along Princes Street and up to the Mound. There must have been several hundred people marching and excellent support from bystanders too. We marched down to the Meadows where a rally was held, including stories read out from survivors of sexual violence, and speakers from the march organisers (EFN), Sandy Brindley from Rape Crisis Scotland and me on behalf of White Ribbon. I was very nervous beforehand and the bright lights on stage made it almost impossible to read what I had prepared and written down! But I did my best to improvise, and I think it worked out well because the crowds cheered and quite a few people said later it had been a really good speech. Some members of the EFN filmed the whole march and rally so it may appear on YouTube someday!

There was a short post march article in the Edinburgh Evening News again on Friday 12th October.

You can find out more information about the event, including photos, at the Reclaim the Night Facebook group and blog.


New Facebook group

October 15, 2007

We’ve set up a new Facebook group for the White Ribbon Scotland campaign. This group is a place to discuss what you can do to get involved, organise local groups and events, and keep in touch with all that is happening in Scotland.

Point your interweb at http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=7936820660

Reclaim the Night March – Glasgow – November 29th 2007

October 9, 2007

The excitement is building for the March in Edinburgh this week and now this news hot off the press from the Rape Crisis Centre in Glasgow…….

Reclaim the Night March – Glasgow – November 29th 2007

In 1999 the United Nations adopted a resolution designating the 25th November ‘International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women’ and calling for worldwide organisation of activities to raise awareness about this issue. This day heralds the beginning of 16 Days of Action for the Elimination of Violence Against Women which ends on 10th December, International Human Rights Day. These two dates are symbolically linked to highlight that violence against women is a violation of women’s basic human rights. These 16 Days of Action also include World Aids Day on 1st December and the anniversary of the Montreal Massacre on December 6th.

Since the 1970s, women across the world have been coming together to reclaim our right to safety on the streets, in our homes, our schools and our workplaces. We are reclaiming the right to be free from all violence and abuse – verbal abuse, sexual harassment, sexual assault, rape, domestic abuse, commercial sexual exploitation, trafficking and murder.

The Rape Crisis Centre in Glasgow are organising a march and rally on 29th November 2007 to mark the 16 Days of Action and to make our voice heard when we say STOP VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN. We are reclaiming the right to our own bodies, to our own safety in every aspect of our lives.

Join us at 6.15 pm on 29th November 2007 at University Avenue (off Byres Road) in Glasgow to march to the STUC at 333 Woodlands Road, Glasgow for a rally which will commence at 7.00 pm. We welcome all women and men supporters to walk with us at this event.

For more information, contact the Rape Crisis Centre on 0141 552 3201 or by email info@rapecrisiscentre-glasgow.co.uk
Flyer for Reclaim the Night March – Glasgow – November 29th 2007