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19 April 2009
Hollywood Star Brian Cox urges Scottish Men to Oppose Violence Against Women

Hollywood Star urges Men to Oppose Violence Against Women

Hollywood star Brian Cox today urged Scottish men to do more in tackling Scotland’s shameful record on violence against women.

Brian CoxThe Dundee born actor, whose film credits include Rob Roy, The Bourne Identity and Troy, expressed his support for the White Ribbon Scotland campaign as it launched a new interactive website to enable Scottish men to take a stand against violence against women.

White Ribbon Scotland is part of an international movement that encourages men's involvement in stopping violence against women. Supporting organisations include Amnesty International, Men’s Health Forum Scotland, Rape Crisis Scotland, the Scottish Trades Union Congress and Zero Tolerance.

The new interactive website enables men to sign up to the White Ribbon Pledge “not to commit, condone, or remain silent about violence against women” and to leave messages and upload pictures of themselves wearing a campaign white ribbon. It also provides links, resources and ideas to enable men to take action.

 Joining Brian Cox at the top of the list of supporting signatures are: novelist Christopher Brookmyre; Walter Smith - Manager of Rangers Football club; the First Minister and the leaders of all Scotland's other political parties; religious figures including His Eminence Cardinal Keith O'Brien, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland Right Reverend David Lunan, and Chief Executive of the Scottish Islamic Foundation Osama Saeed.

 Brian Cox said: "Ever since I was a wee boy in the playground I've hated violence. Violence against anyone. But I'm particularly opposed to violence against women: It's the action of a coward. I'm dead against it"

 John Watson, Scottish Programme Director for Amnesty International, said: “Most men aren’t violent, but we tend to think that violence against women is something we can leave to women’s groups to tackle. Actually there is a great deal that men can do to change the attitudes in society that allow violence against women to take place.”

 Mark Ward, National Co-ordinator of Men’s Health Forum Scotland, said: “Men's Health Forum Scotland is fully committed to supporting the White Ribbon Campaign in Scotland. Violence against women is an issue for each and every one of us, and all men have a role to play. Violence can play no part in a healthy society and we would encourage men from across Scotland to sign the White Ribbon Pledge, and then to put it into action in their own lives”

The website will be officially launched today at the STUC Annual Congress in Perth where tomorrow (Tuesday April 21st) will be declared a 'White Ribbon Day' and all male delegates will be urged to wear a white ribbon to show their support for the campaign.

Grahame Smith, General Secretary of the STUC said: “The workplace and trade unions have important roles to play to challenge cultures which allow violence against women, along with exploitative and demeaning attitudes towards women, to occur.   I am pleased to sign up to the White Ribbon pledge, and the STUC welcomes the launch of the White Ribbon Scotland website at our Annual Congress this week”.

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FACTS


1 in 3 women across the world, will experience gendered violence at some point in their lives.

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