On White Ribbon Day, Joy Allen, Durham’s Police and Crime Commissioner asks us to come together to say no to violence against women and girls.

White Ribbon Day marks the beginning of 16 days of action intended to raise awareness and promote the elimination of violence against women and girls.  The theme of this year’s global campaign is “orange the world” and symbolises a brighter future for women and girls, free of violence and abuse.

White Ribbon Day and the 16 days of action is not only about raising awareness though, but also an opportunity to come together to pledge our shared commitment to action that prevents men’s violence against women.  I am a proud supporter of White Ribbon Day and am asking all our communities, workplaces, and schools to come together to say no to violence against women and girls.   I am also asking you to join with me in spreading the national #AllMenCan message so that as many men as possible are encouraged to think carefully and make the White Ribbon Promise to never commit, excuse or remain silent about male violence against women.

Ensuring the dignity, safety, well-being, and human rights of women and girls is the responsibility of every one of us and requires the joint efforts of many. As Police and Crime Commissioner, I am aware of the harm, often hidden, that is caused by violence and abuse and I am committed to using the full range of tools and powers at my disposal to help create communities where women and girls can live free from fear and achieve their full potential.

I am also aware of, and grateful for, the valuable contribution that our partners in the voluntary and community sector, such as the Rape and Sexual Abuse Counselling Centre, make in supporting those who are at risk or have been subject to violence and abuse and would like to pay tribute to them for their continued dedication.