Challenging men’s demand for prostitution – research findings into attitudes of men who buy sex

April 28, 2008

Findings from new research into Scottish men’s demand for prostitution have been published today. The research is a collaboration between the Women’s Support Project in Glasgow and the US organisation Prostitute Research and Education.

Full Report: Challenging men’s demand for prostitution

Media Coverage

5 stories in The Daily Record
Sex industry in Scotland: Inside the deluded minds of the punters
Sex industry in Scotland: Name and shame the punters
Sex industry in Scotland: Two ways to end prostitution
Sex industry in Scotland: New laws set to be introduced
Lap dance lies are exposed

There is also a quick vote poll on the Daily Record home page ‘What is the best way to end prostitution?’
As I write this at 5.30pm on 28th April the preliminary results are:-
Arrest hookers – 12.0%
Arrest punters – 35.6%
Reduce poverty – 22.1%
Reduce drug use – 30.3%

1 story in The Herald
‘Prostitute punters more violent’

STV short news report
Survey looks at men’s attitudes to prostitution


Sex Trafficking – A public meeting to raise awareness – Edinburgh, Thursday 13th March 2008

March 10, 2008

What?   A public meeting to raise awareness of sex trafficking

When?    Thursday 13th March, 7.00 – 8.30pm

Where?  University of Edinburgh Appleton Tower, Lecture theatre 2, (near George Square) Edinburgh.
Area Map


Barbara Bryan
–    Law Tutor, University of Edinburgh

Naomi McAuliffe
–    Campaigner for Amnesty International

Gil Paterson MSP
–    Member of the Cross-Party Group in the Scottish Parliament on Mens Violence Against Women and Children

Det Superintendent Michael Orr
–    Scottish police spokesperson on Human Trafficking.

£1 Entry, all proceeds go to TARA, the Trafficking Awareness Raising Alliance.

Giant White Ribbon event in Edinburgh – Wed 5th March

March 2, 2008

In the run up to International Women’s Day on Saturday 8th March, several White Ribbon events are happening in Glasgow and Edinburgh next week.

On Wednesday the 5th of March 2008, White Ribbon Scotland invite men to assemble at Bristo Square in Edinburgh from 12.45pm. At 1pm, carrying a giant white ribbon to symbolise the campaign and handing out flyers as we go, we will march along George IV Bridge, down the steps at The Mound, and along Princes St, finishing at at Waterloo Place. A simple action but one that will be seen by a lot of people.

There is more information about this event on the Facebook event page.

White Ribbon Edinburgh group

March 2, 2008

The White Ribbon Edinburgh group now meet every 1st and 3rd Thursday of the month in the Wash Bar, situated on the Mound. They also have their own web site at which includes a map of how to get to the pub.

Next meeting is Thursday March 6th, 2008 at 20:30. Each meeting aims to tackle an issue that relates to, contributes to or even justifies violence against women.

They will also be raising awareness of the campaign and celebrating International Women’s Day with a stall on Princes St on the 8th of March. The group will be situated by Wellington’s statue and will be promoting the aims of the group as well as petitioning against a women’s sexual history being used in court in rape cases.

If you live in the Edinburgh area, go along and get involved. They are a great bunch of guys and everyone committed to helping stop violence against women will be made very welcome!

Web site:
Facebook site:

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.


More information on the Reclaim the Night march

August 29, 2007

The timetable for the Reclaim the Night march on 11th October has now been finalised and looks like this:-

6.30 – 7.30 Men’s Discussion Group and Pre-march gathering (seperate venues, the discussion group will be held at the Wash Bar on the Mound)
7.30 – 8.30 March to begin on Lothian Road (Men to join at the Mound). March to the Meadows.
8.30-9.00 Rally in the Meadows.
9.30- After Party. Venue TBC.

During the march, discussions and rally we hope to show how various forms of women’s oppression are linked up. To make make clear the links between, for example, objectification of women in advertising and the culture in which violence against women is made acceptable.

The Edinburgh Feminist Network got the idea for the discussion group from a Reclaim the Night march held at Columbia University in New York and so I hope to make contact with the facilitators of that group ahead of the march.

Reclaim the Night – Edinburgh, 11th October 2007

August 23, 2007

A date for your diary. The Edinburgh Feminist Network is organising a Reclaim the Night march in Edinburgh on 11th October 2007. As part of the event I’ve been invited to facilitate a men’s discussion group at the Wash Bar on the Mound. The discussion will take place from 6:30 to 7:30 and will hopefully introduce some ideas about resisting violence against women, and especially what men can do to get involved.

The march will then start around 7:30 from Lothian Road, and men will be welcome to join in solidarity at a respectful distance at the back. Following the march there will also be a rally around 8-9pm. I may be invited to speak at this too – more details when I have them.

For more info visit the Reclaim the Night Edinburgh blog

Some history of Reclaim the Night marches