We asked some White Ribbon Day marchers, ‘Why are you here today?’
Alice Coakes, Family Violence outreach program manager: We believe violence against women and their children is a human rights violation. We are here to acknowledge that women and children have died as a result of FDV, and to take a stand as a community. In order to change this, we need the whole community to come together and say that it is unacceptable.
Major Tracey English, MCD assistant divisional social programme secretary – chaplaincy: This march is an initiative that began at St Kilda Crisis services, so it’s a Salvation Army thing in origin. Uniformed salvationists need to be visible on the march. It’s such a huge issue that impacts so many people in so many different ways: homelessness, poverty…we need to stand up.
Ruth Green: I work in the PR department; I’m marching today with my sisters because family violence has touched our family. I am here to say ‘No – it’s not okay’.
Captain Colin Lane: I’m a Salvation Army officer down in Frankston, which is part of the Nepean hub. I’m marching because I feel strongly about this. Violence is not acceptable in any form in our society. Too often ‘domestic violence’ has been seen as acceptable. It’s not, and I made the time and effort to get here, to show my passionate support to prevent this abuse.
Amanda Merrett: I want to be part of a community that says no to violence. There is something that’s really encouraging about communities that respect all people.
Captain Michelle Myles, chaplain at St Kilda Crisis Network: I’m walking today because I’ve been involved with women experiencing domestic violence and our staff, and I believe as a Salvationist that we need to be visible on this issue. It’s not just one part of society, this is a universal problem.
Carolyn Russell: I’m here to show that violence is never, ever acceptable. I want to see a consolidated, collective approach, so we are able to say ‘no!’ as a community.
Major Janette Shepherd: I’ll do anything to stop violence against women and kids. We are all created in God’s image; that means every person is valuable and should be valued and respected.