Roadshow raises awareness of honour-based abuse (5.12.11)
Victims of forced marriages and honour-based abuse and how to help them were the subjects of a Royal Borough Karma Nirvana roadshow on Friday 25 November - national White Ribbon Day.
Karma Nirvana is a national registered charity, helping to support victims and survivors of forced marriage and honour-based abuse.
At the event professionals from a wide range of agencies were each given a white ribbon to wear as a pledge to 'never commit, condone or remain silent about men's violence against women'.
Sixty-five local practitioners attended from agencies across Berkshire East, including Berkshire East & South Bucks Women's Aid, Berkshire Women's Aid, Kinara Asian Women's Service, departments within the local authorities and Thames Valley Police. There was a presentation from Karma Nirvana and a survivor related her story.
Sophie Wing-King, domestic abuse co-ordinator for East Berkshire, who arranged the event, said, "It was a great success. I was very pleased that so many local practitioners were able to attend. The presentation was really engaging and the bravery of the survivor who told her story was so powerful."
Cllr Phill Bicknell, cabinet member with responsibility for community safety, said: "Domestic abuse and honour-based abuse still remain under reported, with victims often too scared to seek help and support. However it is encouraging that locally we are seeing more victims coming forward. We must ensure victims have the information and support they need and that perpetrators know action will be taken against them.
"It is a shame that we still need special days to raise awareness but encouraging that more victims are coming forward. We will be working with Thames Valley Police to make sure all victims of domestic abuse are treated with humanity and respect."
For further information on Karma Nirvana visit www.karmanirvana.org.uk. Information on forced marriages can be found on the Forced Marriage Unit website www.fco.gov.uk/en/travel-and-living-abroad/when-things-go-wrong/forced-marriage
For more information about domestic abuse and a full list of national and local support agencies, visit the borough's domestic abuse forum website at www.rbwmdvf.org.uk