A strong message to stop violence against women and girls was sent out through a campaign organised by Soroptimist International Ipoh (SII) and Perak Women For Women Society (PWW).
Held at the Polo Ground in Ipoh on Sunday, December 7, the campaign included walking around the field once, to create greater awareness and to drum up support for the cause. It was part of a 16-day global activism against gender violence which began on November 25 and ended on December 10, Human Rights Day.
In line with this year’s theme, Men On Board, where the colour orange was adopted, men were seen showing encouragement and approval by putting their signatures onto a specially prepared banner.
One of the two male speakers at the event, S. Sundralingam, a school teacher, said, “Every day, all over the world, women face gender-specific persecution, including sexual slavery, forced prostitution and domestic violence. Gender-based violence stems from the failure of society to recognise the human rights of women. This is an issue that concerns all of us.”
Dato’ Dr Anwar Hassan, a staunch supporter of any campaign for violence against women, opined, “Violence happens because men are not taught to respect women. Respect has to be cultivated within the family and at school beginning with teaching boys to respect girls.”
SII, which was established in 2009, receives about 40 cases a year on domestic violence, emotional abuse, child mistreatment, among others, mainly from the Buntong area. The organisation saw a five per cent increase in cases this year, some of which were referred to the police.