- Posted by: Joyce Watson MS
- Category: Feature
Assembly Member Joyce Watson visited Ysgol Ardudwy this week to discuss how schools can help tackle domestic violence.
The meeting follows reports that domestic abuse is one of the biggest problems facing north Wales.
A report to North Wales’s crime panel states recorded incidents are already up 33% in 2017 – from 2,008 to 2,671 so far this year. According to figures published earlier this year, reports of domestic violence across Wales have increased 23% in three years.
The Labour AM and anti-violence campaigner is visiting schools across her Mid and West Wales region to talk about how they can promote respectful relationships.
Following her meeting on Monday (18 September) with Ysgol Ardudwy headteacher Tudur Williams, she said:
“The latest figures – and the trend – is very worrying. To end domestic violence we need a culture change. We need young people to lead the way and schools have a big part to play, encouraging positive attitudes and relationships from a young age.
“I am delighted Mr Williams is so receptive to promoting positive attitudes in Harlech. When a school like Ysgol Ardudwy demonstrates what can be done, then other schools can do the same.”
Tudur Williams said:
“Ysgol Ardudwy already recognises the importance of including drawing attention to domestic violence in our current Personal and Social Education Programme. We are delighted that we will promote this issue further by being part of the ‘White Ribbon’ campaign this year and look forward to our pupils participating in the special event in Harlech to mark the International day in November.”
Mrs Watson’s school tour is part of her wider ‘White Ribbon’ campaigning. Each year she works with the Women’s Institute to promote the White Ribbon pledge to never commit, condone or remain silent about violence against women and children. Together they recruit male ambassadors from across Welsh life to endorse the message, and organise White Ribbon events across Wales to mark International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, 25 November.
Joyce Watson AM added:
“I look forward to the day when we don’t have to campaign. But while we see figures like these, we must carry on – it’s important the message gets out far and wide.”