A special planting of white crocus bulbs has taken place at Forth Valley College in Alloa to mark the start of the 16 Days of Action programme calling for the end of violence against women and children. The bulbs were planted in the shape of the White Ribbon Campaign symbol, in which men pledge never to condone or stand by where violence against women is happening.
The 16 days runs from 25th November to 10th December, and a number of events are planned throughout Forth Valley. While the campaign focuses specifically on male violence against women, it is recognised that men and people in same sex relationships can also be subject to many of these issues, however in the vast majority of cases these acts are carried out by men against women.
Latest information shows that:
- Around 1 in 4 women will experience some form of domestic abuse at some time in their lives, with similar figures approximated for rape, sexual assault and childhood sexual abuse
- 3,666 incidents of domestic abuse were recorded by police in Forth Valley in 2015-16
- In Scotland, recorded sexual crime has more than doubled in the past decade and is now at its highest level since comparable records began in 1971
Many different types of events are taking place during the 16 days, including seminars for professionals, a conference for young people and a meet the author event. Full details are available at clacksweb
Council Leader Cllr Bobby McGill said: "The planting of these crocuses will be an annual reminder to us all that women in our communities are suffering the terrible effects of violence or abuse, and we all have a duty to work together to eliminate it. The 16 days events are a chance for us to learn more about these issues, and I'd encourage everyone to find out more about the events happening in the local area."