White Ribbon Day is held on November 24 every year and this year, a ‘sausage sizzle’ was held in the park next to the post office in Wallendoon Street in Cootamundra to raise awareness of the ongoing battle against domestic violence. There is now a push for next year in Harden to host a similar event.
Jayne Halls from Mission Australia has organised the day for the last few years and although the event is usually a popular one, this year the numbers were very low.
“Last year we had such a big event, and we had lots of people attend, but this year we had a smaller event and the number of people attending was very low. It was quite disappointing.” Ms Halls said.
“We have always been supported by the Police, and they did not let us down this year, but with the reorganisation of the LAC, we are concerned that we may even lose our Violence Liaison Officer. It’s a worry.”
Member for Cootamundra, Steph Cooke attended the event and has committed to assisting Ms Halls and Mission Australia support White Ribbon Day in 2018.
“It is vital that all our communities, large and small stand up and speak out against violence against women and children.” Ms Cooke said.
“This is such an important issue and we need more White Ribbon events organised across the electorate and I will see that this becomes a significant focus in the Cootamundra Electorate.”
“There are many forms of domestic violence, especially in this technological age. and it cannot be tolerated.”
“I would expect there to be strong support from the men in our community. I expect them to stand up and speak out against domestic violence toward women and children in our electorate.”
Mission Australia Regional Manager for SE NSW, Dan Strickland is keen to see an event held in Harden to support White Ribbon Day, and agreed with Ms Cooke.
“I am an Ambassador for White Ribbon.” Mr Strickland said. “I have found the hardest battle is to get men involved. Most of the events we run are coordinated and attended by women, but we need the men in our communities to stand up and speak out against domestic violence. I am hoping that we may be able to organise a march in Harden next year and get the blokes involved.”