News – Male violence against women is a national emergency – when will political parties make it an election priority? – Glamour

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Violence against women and girls is rarely far from the headlines, but that doesn’t mean it’s inevitable; it’s not.

Sir Mark Rowley, the commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, has cited “eyewatering” figures from an upcoming study that says there are up to 4 million perpetrators of violence against women and children, who are mainly men.

He told the London policing board:

“When you look across violence against women and children, there are millions of offenders in the UK. Some of the numbers are eye-watering.

“The scale of this is way beyond policing and the justice system and we need a frank conversation about it, that looks at prevention work, protective work, as well as enforcement … work.

“This is largely men offending on women and children … You’ve got millions of men in the country who pose a risk to women.”

A YouGov poll found that 68% of the public believe the government should be doing more to tackle violence against women. Additional reports from the End Violence Against Women Coalition (EVAW) show the following disturbing stats:

  • 50% of the public do not trust the police (very much or at all) to tackle VAWG
  • 46% do not trust schools (very much or at all) to tackle sexual offences that occur on the premises
  • 68% of the public believe the government should be doing more to tackle VAWG

Last October, a coalition of over 70 leading organisations working to end violence against women and girls (VAWG) – including EVAW, Refuge, and Women’s Aid – signed a joint manifesto calling on all political parties to tackle VAWG at the next general election.

The manifesto notes that women’s and girls’ right to live free from violence should be a “key election issue”, yet all too often, the subject is “co-opted or weaponised” by political parties to justify regressive policies and/or stoke anti-migrant sentiment. Either that or it’s barely mentioned at all.

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