T-shirt displays make a stand against domestic violence
LISMORE shop owners aren't keeping quiet about domestic violence.
This week, in preparation for White Ribbon Day on Monday, shops in Lismore's CBD have hung t-shirts with messages about domestic violence in their shop windows.
The displays were set up in an effort to raise awareness and promote discussion about the impact of domestic violence.
The t-shirts, which have slogans including "he bought flowers today, he must be sorry" written on them, were created by victims and even some male perpetrators.
Co-ordinator of the Dirty Laundry Day Project Niki Gill said the project came out of the need to reduce the stigma that domestic violence should be kept silent.
"In the past people just accepted domestic violence and didn't talk about it," Ms Gill said.
She said the Dirty Laundry Day Project came out of the need to change community attitudes and air it as "dirty laundry".
"The project is designed to discuss the issues on a community level rather than keeping it private."
And it seems the community is banding together and putting the issues out in the open with the Dirty Laundry Day Project now in its fourth year.
Florist Jess Connor, at Lavish Floral Design, said having the t-shirts in the window of Lavish had been a positive experience with many customers asking about the project.
"It's the first time we've done it but I think it's a really good way for people to discuss things," Ms Connor said.
Ms Gill said it was not just awareness that was created but the project also provided cathartic therapy for those who had created the works.
"I think the program is empowering people and it's really important that we start to talk about it as a community," Ms Gill said.
The t-shirts will be taken down today and will be on exhibition from Monday in the Lismore C3A Community Hub at Lismore Central.
The exhibition will open with a morning tea at 10.30am.