The need for women to Reclaim the Night is as strong as ever

SOMETIMES repeating the same thing over and over can stop having an impact, but the recent murder of Jill Meagher as she was walking home in Melbourne has been a scary reminder to all Australians that the danger of violence against women is still there. On Friday, October 26, women and children from Lismore and surrounding villages will once again take to the streets for the annual Reclaim The Night (RTN) rally and march and according to organiser, Rose Hogan, the need for the march is just as strong as it was when it first started 30 years ago.

"Reclaim The Night is a timely reminder of the need for conversations to take place about ways to change attitudes, responses and the law regarding the sexual assaults, rapes and murders of women and children in our community and across the country," Rose said.

"The RTN march around the streets is a public and symbolic display of women's right to freedom of movement, regardless of what we wear or the time or place we walk. The symbolism is important, for women to unite in solidarity and is particularly important for those women and children who have experienced sexual abuse. There is a need for them to 'reclaim the night' and take back something of themselves."

All women are invited to take part in the march and rally which begins in Lismore at 6pm at the Women's Resource Centre, Magellan Street Arcade (in the courtyard near Playquest and Dragonfly Cafe). Feel free to bring your drums and whistles and make as much noise as possible.

The Lismore Women and Children's Refuge is supporting the rally. Manager Liz Gehring said it was important for women to join together and say violence against women will not be tolerated.

"We regularly hear stories of abuse occurring in our local community and we still have a need for a refuge for women and children," Liz said.

"We support them when they need to escape domestic violence, whether it's physical, emotional or mental violence."

Men are asked to show their support from the sidelines rather than participating in the march.

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