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

Address: Doorway, 1st Floor, 4 Barrack Street, Hamilton ML3 ODG

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
Flyer for Reclaim the Night March – Glasgow – November 29th 2007

“Challenging Demand 2” conference in Glasgow, 24th October 2007

September 12, 2007

The Women’s Support Project has been involved in a range of activities relating to challenging the demand from men for commercial sexual exploitation, including:

  • Delivery of training on ‘understanding the harm caused through prostitution’.
  • Hosting screen debates and other public education events.
  • Hosting a conference on ‘Challenging Demand’, held in May 2006.
  • Undertaking research into attitudes of men who buy sex in prostitution.

They are now planning further activities, to continue this important debate.

  • A second ‘Challenging Demand’ conference, to be held on 24th October 2007, will report on the Scottish research into the attitudes of men who buy sex in prostitution, and will highlight pornography as part of the spectrum of commercial sexual exploitation, and a form of gender based violence against women.
  • An anti-pornography training day will be held on 25th October 2007. This day will be aimed at people who are already active in work against violence against women, and who are committed to undertaking public education work on this issue. Places are being offered to each VAW training consortium, as well as to a range of national organisations.

Gail Dines, Professor of Sociology and Women’s Studies, Wheelock College, Boston and Dr Rebecca Whisnant, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, University of Dayton, Ohio, have been invited to speak at the conference, and will be facilitating the training. Both Gail and Rebecca are founder members of the U.S. National Feminist Anti-Pornography Movement, and have a number of works published on commercial sexual exploitation, including ‘Pornography: the Production and Consumption of Inequality’, and ‘Not for Sale: Feminists Resisting Prostitution and Pornography.

Scottish Women Against Pornography will also be involved. SWAP is the leading Scottish organisation currently challenging pornography, and actively campaigning on a range of issues. SWAP have expertise, skills and in-depth knowledge of how pornography is promoted, marketed and justified as ‘freedom of speech’, fantasy, aid to sexual (read male) fulfillment and also justification for male sexual violence against women, girls and boys. Catherine Harper of SWAP contributed to the Scottish research into attitudes of men who buy sex.

For more information please contact the Women’s Support Project.

Screen Debate at Glasgow Film Theatre, 26th September 2007

September 12, 2007

The Women’s Support Project, in conjunction with Glasgow Film Theatre, presents this popular annual event to mark September as ‘Month of Action’ to raise awareness about child sexual abuse.

This year’s event will screen the film ‘Mysterious Skin’.
‘…”The summer I was eight years old, five hours disappeared from my life. Five hours, lost, gone without a trace…”

These are the words of Brian Lackey (Brady Corbet), a troubled 18 year old, growing up in the stiffingly small town of Hutchinson, Kansas. Plagued by nightmares, Brian believes that he may have been the victim of an alien abduction. Local Neil McCormick (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) however, is the ultimate beautiful outsider. Neil is wise beyond his years and curious about his developing sexuality, having found what he perceived to be love from his Little League baseball coach at a very early age. Now, ten years later, Neil is a teenage hustler, nonchalant about the dangerous path his life is taking. Neil’s pursuit of love leads him to New York City, while Brian’s voyage of self discovery leads him to Neil – who helps him to unlock the dark secrets of their past. Based on the acclaimed novel by Scott Heim, ‘Mysterious Skin’ explores the hearts and minds of two very different boys who come to find the key to their future happiness lies in the exorcism of their collective demons.’

Following the screening there will be an audience/panel discussion.

Glasgow Film Theatre, Cinema 2
Wednesday, 26th September 2007, 5.45pm – 8.30pm
Sign Language Interpreter. Wheelchair Accessible

Tickets available from Glasgow Film Theatre, 12 Rose Street, Glasgow, 0141 332 8128. Tickets, £4 / £3
Early booking is advised to avoid disappointment!

Presentations and discussions from “Men Enough!” conference now online

September 12, 2007

This conference, organised by the Men’s Health Forum Scotland, took place on Friday 11th May 2007 at Glasgow City Chambers. I had a White Ribbon Scotland stand there selling ribbons and distributing information. The event really helped me to meet a lot of excellent supportive people. Presentations and discussions from the day are now online and freely available to download.