The Royal Australian Navy has marked White Ribbon Day with events around the country to highlight Defence’s commitment to the White Ribbon campaign and Defence’s own cultural change programs.
White Ribbon is the world's largest male-led movement to end violence against women and White Ribbon Day provided an opportunity to have conversations about the positive role men can play in preventing violence in the community.
In Sydney, Navy’s 723 Squadron flew a White Ribbon banner from a Bell 429 helicopter publicly displaying support to the movement.
Canberra based personnel took the message to the streets walking around Lake Burley Griffin, reaffirming Defence’s commitment to ending violence against women, and promoting gender equality, healthy relationships and a new vision of masculinity.
Navy members at HMAS Stirling stood side by side with a display of 52 silhouettes representing the average number of women killed per year as a result of domestic violence.'
Chief of Staff Navy Strategic Command, Commodore Colin Lawrence, said the statistics around domestic violence are staggering.
“On average, one woman is killed every week by a current or former partner in Australia, and one in four young Australians are exposed to domestic violence,” Commodore Lawrence said.
“Through White Ribbon Day events, we can confront this significant community challenge and show that Navy will not tolerate violence or harassment in any form.
“Violence against women, and wider family and domestic violence, has devastating consequences for not only victims and their children, but also the whole community. It is unacceptable behaviour and inconsistent with Navy’s values and signature behaviours.
“In 2014, Navy became a White Ribbon accredited organisation to recognise the efforts Navy is undertaking to stop violence against women and reduce the prevalence of family and domestic violence.
“Navy is committed to continue to highlight this important societal issue and our efforts to protect all Australians. Defence has a significant number of programs and mechanisms in place to support Defence members and their families who may be experiencing violence.”
Navy is a proud White Ribbon workplace and encourages everyone to take the White Ribbon pledge to never commit, excuse or remain silent about violence against women.