Today (13 Sept 2011), the Welsh Government launched their ‘Live Fear Free’ campaign – a drive from the Welsh Government to help raise awareness and challenge attitudes towards domestic abuse in Wales.
It was launched at the Queens Arcade shopping centre, in Cardiff, with a display using washing lines.
Hung on each washing line are specially-created t-shirts bearing images and comments created by survivors of domestic abuse in Wales. Each t-shirt depicts how their own experiences of domestic abuse made them feel.
Welsh Minister for Local Government and Communities, Carl Sargeant, launched the campaign and said
"The Welsh Government is determined to do all it can to help victims of domestic abuse and to ensure they are supported and can live safely within their local communities.
"The high profile campaigning work we have done so far as part of our six year strategy to tackle violence against women and domestic abuse, means that we have come a long way in recent years. However, I recognise that more needs to be done and by working with our partners we will make provide help and support to enable people to live fear free.
"Many lives are affected by domestic abuse but because it happens behind closed doors, it is often ignored. Our latest campaign, Live Fear Free, provides a powerful insight into the impact of domestic abuse and seeks to challenge attitudes and behaviours.
"I hope that this campaign will spread the message that domestic abuse is not acceptable and will not be tolerated and will give victims the confidence to come forward and seek help and support.
"I am determined to do all I can to make sure that everyone in Wales knows the number for the All Wales Domestic Abuse Helpline number, 0808 8010 800. I am asking all of the media to play their part by publicising the number whenever they are reporting any news items that relate to domestic abuse."
‘Live Fear Free
’ is the latest campaign to be launched by Welsh Government as part of its ongoing ‘Right to Be Safe’ agenda. It consists of two high-impact videos that will be hosted on the campaign’s website. The first video focuses on sexual violence against women while the second video looks at the effects of domestic abuse on children. Both videos will run in the fortnight following the launch and include information on how to seek help.
NUS Wales Womens' Officer Steph Lloyd, speaking in a blog post said:-
"It is great to see the Welsh Government taking such a strong stance against Violence against Women, in fact in times of cuts they are providing the Violence against Women and Domestic Abuse Unit with more funding. Only this morning I met with their head of policy and we are starting to plan how we can work together to tackle the issues raised in the NUS Hidden Marks report from 2010."
A range of specialist localised services are available across Wales that can provide practical and emotional support in response to sexual assault. For information about specialist services available please contact the All Wales Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 80 10 800.