A revolution against violence

Happy V-Day everybody!

February 14 has traditionally been Valentines Day, a day for lovers to celebrate their love and for retailers of flowers and chocolate to cash in.

But it has been re-branded as V-Day, (which stands for victory, vagina and Valentine); a global movement to end violence against women and girls.

Now in it's 15th year, V-Day organisers have this year launched the 'One Billion Rising' campaign which aims to get one billion people across the world out on the streets dancing and demanding an end to violence. There will be a 'Lismore Rising' dance event behind the transit centre in Molesworth Street from 4.30-6pm.

The name 'One Billion Rising' comes from a frightening statistic that one out of three women will experience violence in their lifetime, which equates to over a billion women across the planet. Their slogan is 'One billion women violated is an atrocity. One billion women dancing is a revolution'.

The thing I like about this campaign is that they are not trying to exclude men, but to include us.

Last Friday I was invited to participate in a promotional photograph with a randomly selected group of "good men" to help raise awareness about the campaign and to encourage as many men as possible to get along to the event in Lismore. (See story page 10)

It probably doesn't hurt your cause to butter up the editor of the local paper, but it's an issue I wholeheartedly support.

A world where women are violated is not a world I want my daughters to grow up in.

So c'mon everyone, let's celebrate V-Day and spread the word that violence and non-consensual sex are never OK.

There are changes afoot at The Echo. This week sees the departure of our long-suffering designer Steve Cox whose Tourette's-like swearing at his f***ing computer and his ability to eat all day long have kept us amused for the past four years. And next week will see the departure of journalist Jennie Dell, who was the The Echo's original editor 22 years ago, and for the past 12 months has been our senior reporter and acting editor whenever I was on holiday. I would like to take this opportunity to thank them both for the effort and care they have given to the paper.

As a result of the shake-up we will no longer have anybody assigned to compile the 'Around Town' community notices page. But we want to continue offering this free service to community groups and have arranged for Joy Hall at the Lismore Neighbourhood Centre to take over this important role. See details on page 28.

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