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Archive for July, 2016

Productivity Commission Inquiry: White Ribbon Submission

White Ribbon Australia appreciates the opportunity to comment on the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Introducing Competition and Informed User Choice into Human Services (Inquiry) and commends the Inquiry.

There are benefits to promoting competition in human services, including the violence against women primary prevention sector, provided the market created is fair, rewards best practice and ensures finite resources are deployed to avoid duplication and meet unmet need.

See our full submission regarding how Federal and State Governments can drive effective market practice to stop violence against women.

For media interviews contact Sally Burleigh: Sally@sbpr.com.au and 0419 516 889

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NT Department of Correctional Services Terminated as White Ribbon Workplace

In response to the ABC’s Four Corners investigation into the repeated assault and mistreatment of boys at youth detention centres in the Northern Territory,  the announcement of a royal commission and the dismissal of the Minister, the Northern Territory Department of Correctional Services has been terminated as an accredited White Ribbon Workplace.

Footage of the teargassing and torture of children in the Don Dale Youth Corrections Centre in Darwin shows unacceptable institutional conduct that contravenes the fundamental principles of White Ribbon Workplace Accreditation and White Ribbon’s zero tolerance of violence.

“The violence suffered by children and young people in the Darwin detention centre works to engender a culture of violence and disrespect and violates basic human rights,” said Nicholas Cowdery AM QC, Chair of White Ribbon Australia.

Last night’s broadcast, which contained footage of an Australian teenager being forcefully restrained on a chair and wearing a ‘spit hood’, and of boys being sprayed with tear gas after spending hours locked in solitary cells, is evidence of the violation of the responsibilities of an accredited White Ribbon Workplace and has resulted in termination of the accreditation.

“Workplaces have a critical role to play in setting standards of appropriate behaviour and holding perpetrators accountable for violence, by implementing policy and procedure, training staff in respectful behaviours, recognising the signs of abuse and intervening. This is essential and the department has failed to meet its obligations,” Professor Cowdery said.

As part of the accreditation process, organisations take part in a rigorous, internationally recognised program, which has reached almost half a million Australian adults through their jobs. They are required to make a number of changes, including the provision of leave to staff experiencing violence, codes of conduct, support services and staff training.

The total number of Australian employers that have attained accreditation is 64, including some in the traditionally male industries of stevedoring, mining and construction.

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The White Ribbon Campaign is the largest global male-led movement to stop violence against women. In Australia, White Ribbon’s prevention work engages men and boys to lead social change through its programs in schools, sporting codes, workplaces and communities. White Ribbon Night is one of the organisation’s two major annual campaigns, alongside White Ribbon Day on 25 November.

For media interviews contact Sally Burleigh: Sally@sbpr.com.au and 0419 516 889

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South Australian departments gain accreditation as White Ribbon Workplaces

15 July 2016: A state government has committed to working to end violence against women, with a suite of 11 South Australian departments gaining accreditation as White Ribbon Workplaces today.

Over 18 months, 20 workplaces nationally, including South Australia’s Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Attorney General’s Department, Department of Correctional Services and SA Police, took part in the rigorous, internationally recognised program, which now has reached almost half a million Australian adults through their jobs.

As part of the accreditation process, organisations are required to make a number of changes, including the provision of leave to staff experiencing violence, codes of conduct, support services and staff training.

The new complement of White Ribbon Workplaces brings the total number of Australian employers that have attained accreditation to 65, including those in the traditionally male industries of stevedoring, mining and construction. Organisations already accredited include Telstra and the Australian Army.

Victorian, Northern Territory, Queensland and ACT government agencies have also successfully completed the program, together with BaptistCare in NSW and the ACT, Australian Hearing Services, Southern Cross Care Victoria, Australian Civil-Military Centre, and the KWY 147 Aboriginal Consultancy.

Real change can come about through addressing domestic violence via workplaces. Around 1.4 million Australian women are or have been in an abusive relationship, with about 800,000 of them currently in the paid workforce.

“Most organisations employ perpetrators and victims of domestic violence at one time or another. These White Ribbon Workplaces are walking the talk of violence prevention,” said Libby Davies, CEO of White Ribbon Australia.

“Disclosing an experience of violence to supervisors can be traumatic for victims and an unhelpful response significantly reduces the likelihood a person will disclose again. It can also be a stressful time for bosses receiving the news. Training is critical to safely intervening, whether it be by calling out staff who are displaying disrespectful behaviours or recognising the signs of abuse and getting help for staff.”

The full list of newly accredited White Ribbon Workplaces: South Australian Government’s Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Attorney General’s Department, Department of Correctional Services, Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources, Department for Education and Child Development, Department of Health and Ageing, Department of State Development, Department of Treasury and Finance, Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure, Department of Primary Industries and Regions, and SA Police. BaptistCare in NSW and the ACT, the ACT Government’s Community Services Directorate, the Northern Territory’s Department of Local Government and Community Services, the Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads, Australian Hearing Services, Southern Cross Care Victoria, the Victoria Government’s Department of Justice and Regulation, KWY 147 Aboriginal Consultancy and Australian Civil-Military Centre.
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White Ribbon is the world’s largest movement of men and boys working to end men’s violence against women and girls, promote gender equality, healthy relationships and a new vision of masculinity. The White Ribbon in Australia is a recognised symbol of zero tolerance to violence against women.

 

For media interviews contact Sally Burleigh: Sally@sbpr.com.au and 0419 516 889

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Homeless, Not Houseless: Violence Against Women Leads to Rising Rates of Homelessness

Domestic violence is causing rising rates of homelessness for women and children with many unable to live in the houses they have because the risk of abuse is too great, according to White Ribbon Australia.

White Ribbon is dedicated to highlighting the scourge of violence against women and working to prevent it from occurring at all. It seeks to create a change in culture that allows this violence to take place and an Australia in which violence against women is no longer misunderstood, excused or joked about.

View the full media release to see how White Ribbon will work with the community to stop domestic violence this White Ribbon Night and beyond.

For media interviews contact Sally Burleigh: Sally@sbpr.com.au and 0419 516 889

This policy statement represents the organisational position of White Ribbon Australia. It does not represent the individual opinions and views of our stakeholders, including, but not limited to, our Ambassadors, Advocates, Partners and staff members.

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