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Four ways to speak out against domestic violence

Thursday 20 May 2010 Campaigns News

Speak out against domestic violence:  sign this petition to end the postcode lottery of services for women.

Following the launch of Hidden Marks, the NUS Women's Campaign's research into women students’ experiences of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault, we have teamed up with national domestic violence charity Refuge and Avon, the company for women, in a major new campaign – Four Ways to Speak Out Against Domestic Violence.

The Hidden Marks report showed that 1 in 7 women students have experienced serious physical or sexual violence while a student at their current institution. The report also showed that 68% of students have experienced sexual harassment while at university. Violence against women is a serious, widespread problem for students - and we must all unite to end it.

Currently one in three local authorities has no specialist domestic violence support at all - which means women students in those areas can't access any help. Women in a third of areas have no access to refuges, community-based support services, or specialist support for children.  Four Ways to Speak Out against Domestic Violence is calling on the government to end this terrible postcode lottery of services.

Two women a week are killed by a current or former partner, and an estimated 10 more take their own lives because they believe there is no help out there for them.  How many of these women’s lives could have been saved if they had somewhere safe to go?  On behalf of all these women, who can no longer speak out for themselves, please take a moment to add your name to the petition

The government will only start to take domestic violence seriously if we put real pressure on them.  We need tens of thousands of people, women and men, to stand up and say that we will not tolerate this any longer - that women experiencing violence and abuse have a basic human right to protection and support. So, if and when you add your name, please send the link to the petition to all your friends, family and colleagues and place a link on your Facebook page, Twitter feed or union website.

If you would like to help us spread the word across your institution, you can request posters and postcards from the NUS Women's Campaign, by emailing women@nus.org.uk, to display in unions or hand out at events.