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Agenda item

Notice of Motion Regarding "White Ribbon Day and Ending Male Violence Against Women" - Given By Councillor Ben Curran and To Be Seconded By Councillor Garry Weatherall

That this Council:-

 

(a)       believes that the Council must do everything it can to end male violence against women;

 

(b)      notes the work of White Ribbon UK in raising awareness and campaigning on this issue, with their particular focus on the need to engage with men and boys;

 

(c)      notes that November 25 is White Ribbon Day and many organisations across the country use this annual event as an opportunity to raise awareness about violence against women, and believes that Sheffield City Council should mark this occasion and show that the organisation is committed to being part of the solution;

 

(d)      believes that the White Ribbon Day should be marked by all areas of the Organisation, by undertaking the following:-

 

·        encourage all staff to wear a White Ribbon;

·        share messages about White Ribbon UK, including on social media, and why this is such an important issue to tackle;

·        particularly encourage men to wear a White Ribbon, and make the ‘White Ribbon Promise’ to never commit, excuse or remain silent about violence against women;

·        display the White Ribbon symbol in and around council buildings – on windows and noticeboards;

 

(e)      directs that discussions should be undertaken with White Ribbon UK to investigate being part of their White Ribbon Accreditation scheme;

 

(f)       believes that raising awareness about violence against women, and acting to combat this, is not something that should be just shouted about one day a year, but all year round;

 

(g)      requests that all Local Area Committee chairs task their committees with investigating what work is being undertaken in their areas to combat violence against women; report on what action the committee will take; and report on how the Council can better support and educate communities on this issue;

 

(h)      shares concern that the Our Bodies, Our Streets installation on the Ponderosa, highlighting sexual harassment, was burned down, and shares the resolve of the woman who posted a sign reading 'this won't stop us' in the ashes;

 

(i)       resolves to work alongside the newly formed ‘Claim Back West Street’ Campaign - which aims to make West Street a safer place, following the recent escalation of drink spiking; and

 

(j)       reiterates the importance of the Violence Reduction Unit (VRU) to address Violence Against Women and Girls in South Yorkshire, and notes that this constitutes a wide partnership of many organisations: South Yorkshire’s four local authorities, youth offending teams, South Yorkshire Police, South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, clinical commissioning groups/NHS, Department for Work and Pensions, voluntary and faith sectors, educational establishments and the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) - and commits to working with the VRU to produce a strategy for South Yorkshire that will give greater coherence to what each organisation is doing individually, as well as putting front and centre the experience of victims.

 

 

Minutes:

7.1

It was moved by Councillor Ben Curran, and seconded by Councillor Garry Weatherall, that this Council:-

 

 

 

(a)      believes that the Council must do everything it can to end male violence against women;

 

 

 

(b)      notes the work of White Ribbon UK in raising awareness and campaigning on this issue, with their particular focus on the need to engage with men and boys;

 

 

 

(c)      notes that November 25 is White Ribbon Day and many organisations across the country use this annual event as an opportunity to raise awareness about violence against women, and believes that Sheffield City Council should mark this occasion and show that the organisation is committed to being part of the solution;

 

 

 

(d)      believes that the White Ribbon Day should be marked by all areas of the Organisation, by undertaking the following:-

 

 

 

·       encourage all staff to wear a White Ribbon;

 

·       share messages about White Ribbon UK, including on social media, and why this is such an important issue to tackle;

 

·       particularly encourage men to wear a White Ribbon, and make the ‘White Ribbon Promise’ to never commit, excuse or remain silent about violence against women;

 

·       display the White Ribbon symbol in and around council buildings – on windows and noticeboards;

 

 

 

(e)      directs that discussions should be undertaken with White Ribbon UK to investigate being part of their White Ribbon Accreditation scheme;

 

 

 

(f)       believes that raising awareness about violence against women, and acting to combat this, is not something that should be just shouted about one day a year, but all year round;

 

 

 

(g)      requests that all Local Area Committee chairs task their committees with investigating what work is being undertaken in their areas to combat violence against women; report on what action the committee will take; and report on how the Council can better support and educate communities on this issue;

 

 

 

(h)      shares concern that the Our Bodies, Our Streets installation on the Ponderosa, highlighting sexual harassment, was burned down, and shares the resolve of the woman who posted a sign reading 'this won't stop us' in the ashes;

 

 

 

(i)       resolves to work alongside the newly formed ‘Claim Back West Street’ Campaign - which aims to make West Street a safer place, following the recent escalation of drink spiking; and

 

 

 

(j)       reiterates the importance of the Violence Reduction Unit (VRU) to address Violence Against Women and Girls in South Yorkshire, and notes that this constitutes a wide partnership of many organisations: South Yorkshire’s four local authorities, youth offending teams, South Yorkshire Police, South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, clinical commissioning groups/NHS, Department for Work and Pensions, voluntary and faith sectors, educational establishments and the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) - and commits to working with the VRU to produce a strategy for South Yorkshire that will give greater coherence to what each organisation is doing individually, as well as putting front and centre the experience of victims.

 

 

7.2

Whereupon, it was moved by Councillor Ruth Mersereau, and seconded by Councillor Paul Turpin, as an amendment, that the Motion now submitted be amended by the deletion of paragraph (e), the addition of new paragraphs (e) to (i) as follows, and the re-lettering of original paragraphs (f) to (j) as new paragraphs (j) to (n):-

 

 

 

(e)      notes discussions with White Ribbon UK began in 2019 and were renewed in October this year with an enquiry regarding the White Ribbon Accreditation scheme;

 

 

 

(f)       believes that Sheffield City Council can fulfil all of the requirements of accreditation with the exception of one item;

 

 

 

(g)      requests this Council agree to address the outstanding item and support a change to licensing policy needed for accreditation - end the licensing of Sexual Entertainment Venues;

 

 

 

(h)      recognises this Council has previously admitted that it breached the Public Sector Equality Duty in respect of a licence application for a Sexual Entertainment Venue;

 

 

 

(i)       believes that while female bodies can be routinely bought and sold for male sexual pleasure, all women’s safety is compromised and all suffer the indignity of objectification;

 

 

7.3

After contributions from five other Members, and following a right of reply from Councillor Ben Curran, the amendment moved by Councillor Ruth Mersereau was put to the vote and was negatived.

 

 

7.4

The original Motion was then put to the vote and carried as follows:-

 

 

 

 

 

RESOLVED: That this Council:-

 

 

 

(a)      believes that the Council must do everything it can to end male violence against women;

 

 

 

(b)      notes the work of White Ribbon UK in raising awareness and campaigning on this issue, with their particular focus on the need to engage with men and boys;

 

 

 

(c)      notes that November 25 is White Ribbon Day and many organisations across the country use this annual event as an opportunity to raise awareness about violence against women, and believes that Sheffield City Council should mark this occasion and show that the organisation is committed to being part of the solution;

 

 

 

(d)      believes that the White Ribbon Day should be marked by all areas of the Organisation, by undertaking the following:-

 

 

 

·        encourage all staff to wear a White Ribbon;

 

·        share messages about White Ribbon UK, including on social media, and why this is such an important issue to tackle;

 

·        particularly encourage men to wear a White Ribbon, and make the ‘White Ribbon Promise’ to never commit, excuse or remain silent about violence against women;

 

·        display the White Ribbon symbol in and around council buildings – on windows and noticeboards;

 

 

 

(e)      directs that discussions should be undertaken with White Ribbon UK to investigate being part of their White Ribbon Accreditation scheme;

 

 

 

(f)       believes that raising awareness about violence against women, and acting to combat this, is not something that should be just shouted about one day a year, but all year round;

 

 

 

(g)      requests that all Local Area Committee chairs task their committees with investigating what work is being undertaken in their areas to combat violence against women; report on what action the committee will take; and report on how the Council can better support and educate communities on this issue;

 

 

 

(h)      shares concern that the Our Bodies, Our Streets installation on the Ponderosa, highlighting sexual harassment, was burned down, and shares the resolve of the woman who posted a sign reading 'this won't stop us' in the ashes;

 

 

 

(i)       resolves to work alongside the newly formed ‘Claim Back West Street’ Campaign - which aims to make West Street a safer place, following the recent escalation of drink spiking; and

 

 

 

(j)       reiterates the importance of the Violence Reduction Unit (VRU) to address Violence Against Women and Girls in South Yorkshire, and notes that this constitutes a wide partnership of many organisations: South Yorkshire’s four local authorities, youth offending teams, South Yorkshire Police, South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, clinical commissioning groups/NHS, Department for Work and Pensions, voluntary and faith sectors, educational establishments and the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) - and commits to working with the VRU to produce a strategy for South Yorkshire that will give greater coherence to what each organisation is doing individually, as well as putting front and centre the experience of victims.