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Become a Women’s Aid Campaign Champion

Women’s Aid Campaign Champions support our national campaigns on a local level, give survivors of domestic violence a voice and help to ensure that politicians and other key decision makers are listening.

“Campaigning has empowered me. Knowing that my voice is heard in the political sphere when I have spoken at Parliamentary events and at an APPG meeting, it’s important for me to know that my experiences will help other survivors and shape future legislation and service provision.”

– Survivor and Women’s Aid campaigner

SOS vigil campaigners

How does it work?

When you sign up to be a campaign champion we’ll send you all the information you need to get involved. Every campaign we run has actions for our Campaign Champions.

Depending on how much time you have to give you might sign a petition, send a tweet, write to your MP, set up a local meeting or event to raise awareness, secure local media coverage or attend and support national events. We send you all the information, resources and materials that you might need.

Latest actions

Save Refuges, Save Lives

The future of refuges is once again under threat. Join Women’s Aid to save refuges, save lives.

The government is proposing a major change to how refuges are funded from 2020. Our survey of refuge services has shown the proposed new model of funding would force over half of refuges responding to close or reduce their provision – resulting in 4000 more women and children turned away from the lifesaving services they desperately need.

These proposals threaten to dismantle our life-saving national network of refuges and put women and children trying to escape domestic abuse at risk.

  • Sign our petition
  • Please urgently contact your Member of Parliament (MP) to ask that they back the Women’s Aid SOS call to Save Refuges, Save Lives. Download a template letter to send to your MP.  You can find out who your MP is here.

Previous actions

Exciting update from our #ChildFirst campaign!

After 18 months of campaigning to improve safety for women and children survivors in the family courts, new guidance for judges making child contact decisions in domestic abuse cases came into force on 2 October 2017.

Women’s Aid – together with survivors, campaigners and experts – have worked closely on these new changes to Practice Direction 12J. Critically, there are now mandatory requirements for all judges and magistrates to follow when making contact orders for children at risk of harm from an abusive parent. Judges must state why contact in domestic abuse cases is safe, and family courts need to ensure that special protection measures are available.

The revised Practice Direction 12J is a critical step forward. But, sadly, we know that all too often guidance in these cases is not followed – putting children’s safety at risk.

It is critical that all judges, magistrates, court staff and Cafcass officers know about this new guidance, and how to use it. We hope you can help us raise awareness about the new guidance.

  • Download our template letter on Practice Direction 12J
  • Find your local court using this A-Z, and check that it hears children, family or domestic violence cases.
  • Use the contact details listed to send the letter to your local court – either by email or post.
  • Please share any responses you receive with us! [email protected]

Survivors need a safety net, join the #WellFAIR campaign

On International Peace Day (21st September) which is devoted to Respect, Safety and Dignity for All – we are calling on the Government to ensure our welfare system is #WellFAIR. Together with our sister federations in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, we are campaigning to end two dangerous policies impacting on survivors:

  1. The two child tax credit limit and “rape clause”, which forces victims of domestic and sexual violence to disclose that their third or subsequent baby was born as a result of rape or coercive control. This dangerous policy is a serious human rights concern.
  2. The benefit cap – which is pushing women with young children into hardship and homelessness, and forcing women in abusive relationships to choose between poverty or safety.

Read our Joint Open Letter on the Two Child Tax Credit Limit

Read our Letter to the Chancellor & Secretary of State for Work and Pensions.

Please join us by signing the petition and sharing a photo of an empty purse on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #WellFAIR. Include a message of support for survivors too – here are some ideas:

  • Survivors should never be forced to choose between poverty and safety. #wellFAIR
  • Benefit cap forces survivors to choose between poverty & safety. Unsafe. Unfair. I call on UK Gov to reverse immediately #wellFAIR
  • Escape, and face hardship, poverty or homelessness. Or stay with an abusive partner. The choice facing survivors under the benefit cap #wellFAIR
  • We need a safety net that helps survivors recover once they’ve escaped abuse. I call for #wellFAIR system that works.

Hung Parliament – Let’s make domestic abuse a top priority

 

Join us to make domestic abuse a top priority in the new Parliament – please write to your MP and ask them to join the APPG on Domestic Violence:

  • You can download a template letter to personalise for your MP here.
  • Find out who your new MP is here.

Female figures joining hands and holding banner "Will your MP show up to CHANGE HERSTORY On 24th February 2017?"Take Action and #ChangeHerstory

On 24 February 2017 Parliament has a historic opportunity to take action on domestic abuse and violence against women and girls.

The Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence – the ‘Istanbul Convention’ – is the first international treaty to make domestic violence and VAWG illegal, and protect the rights of survivors.

Governments that sign the Istanbul Convention commit to ensuring survivors of domestic abuse can access support and the specialist services – such as local Women’s Aid refuges, which are currently under severe threat from proposed Government’s housing reforms – they need to live in safety and rebuild their lives.

The UK Government signed the Convention in 2012, and MPs voted overwhelmingly for ratification when the Istanbul Convention Private Member’s Bill received Second Reading on 16 December 2016. If 100 MPs to attend a historic debate on the Convention on 24 February 2017, we will be one step closer to making the Convention law in the UK.

We need you to write to your MP, to ask them to attend this historic debate on Friday 24 February 2017 and support the Istanbul Convention Bill:

Thank you for joining Women’s Aid, and IC Change, to #ChangeHerstory.

16 Days Campaign Pack

The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence take place every year, from the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on 25 November to Human Rights Day on 10 December. ‘16 Days’ is an opportunity to help raise awareness and take action to end domestic abuse and violence against women and girls (VAWG).

For more information, and ideas to help you campaign and raise awareness, please download the Campaign Champion 16 Days pack here.

Join us during 16 Days to make your voice heard, and campaign for a future free from abuse.

Police and Crime Commissioner and London Mayor elections

Make sure your Police and Crime Commissioner candidates or London Mayor Candidates are committed to hearing, seeing and believing survivors of domestic abuse, if they are elected on 5 May 2016.

If you live in London you will be voting for the new Mayor of London and if you live outside of London you will be voting for a Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for your area.

All PCCs and the Mayor of London have really important roles in protecting survivors of domestic abuse.  They are in charge of the local police force budget, they oversee the safety of the community and they have to produce a Police and Crime Plan which sets out how they will deal with crimes in their area. Critically, it’s also their job to make sure that women survivors of domestic abuse crimes have access to specialist support services in the community, which can be funded by the PCC or Mayor.

Make sure your PCC/London Mayor candidates are ready to step up and support survivors of domestic abuse if they are elected!

  • The police in England and Wales receive a domestic abuse related call on average every 30 seconds.
  • Two women a week are killed by incidents of domestic violence in England and Wales.
  • Domestic violence accounts for around 8% of all recorded crime, 11% of all recorded sexual offences, 33% of all recorded assaults with injury and 49% of all recorded harassment crime.

Download our pledges and send them to, or tweet them to the PCC candidates or London Mayoral candidates standing for election in your area:

London Mayoral Election Briefing

Police Commissioner Election Briefing

You can find out who the PCC candidates standing for election in your area are at this website, and can also download or order a free candidate information brochure: http://www.choosemypcc.org.uk/ .

For Londoners, the 12 London Mayor candidates are listed here: https://www.londonelects.org.uk/im-voter/who-you-can-vote

Can you send this important information to your local MP?

Women’s Aid has created a toolkit for MPs constituency offices to help them to identify and support survivors of domestic abuse that might come to them for help.

Can you post this toolkit and accompanying top priorities for Government document to your local MPs office, drop some copies in or email them over?

MP Toolkit (PDF)

Download toolkit

Our Top 5 Priorities (PDF)

Read and share our top five priorities for the new government to tackle domestic violence:

Download

We want to try and make sure all MP’s offices are aware of the importance of recognising domestic abuse and are able to provide the right information and support to women who are experiencing domestic abuse.

Find your local MP using this website: http://www.theyworkforyou.com/

Help us to make the family courts safer

Women’s Aid are concerned that survivors of domestic abuse are not able to access important protection measures in the family court when facing their abuser.

Download this briefing to find out more and how you can get involved.

Download

Read our Chief Executive Polly’s blog on protection measures

© 2015 Women's Aid Federation of England – Women’s Aid is a company limited by guarantee registered in England No: 3171880.

Women’s Aid is a registered charity in England No. 1054154

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