Merton celebrates achieving White Ribbon accreditation

Merton Council staff and councillors Agatha Akyigyina, far left, and Eleanor Stringer, Cabinet Member for Civic Pride, far right, mark White Ribbon Day in the council chamber

Merton Council has achieved White Ribbon accredited status, demonstrating our commitment to ending violence against women and girls by men and boys.   

White Ribbon UK is the leading charity working to end male violence against women through a programme of awareness raising and campaigning, focusing on the need to engage with men and boys. White Ribbon wants men at the forefront of making a positive contribution to end these behaviors.  

The aim is to change long established, and harmful, attitudes and systems around masculinity that perpetuate gender inequality and men’s violence against women. The work is preventative, aiming to end violence before it starts.  

Every year on 25 November, the charity runs the White Ribbon Campaign which promotes the wearing of a white ribbon. You can show support by wearing a white ribbon. Wearing a white ribbon is a personal pledge to not commit, condone or remain silent about violence against women. This forms part of the 16 Days Against Violence and Abuse campaign running from 25 November-10 December. 

As a White Ribbon accredited organisation, Merton Council will make changes to our communications, HR policies, employee development, training, and overall organisational culture.   

Male members of council staff will also become White Ribbon Ambassadors, volunteers engaging with other men and boys to call out abusive and sexist behaviour among friends, colleagues and communities to promote a culture of equality and respect.  There will also be White Ribbon Champions, who support the work of the campaign and help to engage with men and work within communities.

There will also be Bystander Training available for residents on 7 December. Find out more here and sign up for the training https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/425861773027.

Women champions are an essential part of White Ribbon, ensuring that their voices, especially those of survivors of violence and abuse, are heard.  

Chief Executive Hannah Doody and Cllr Ross Garrod, Leader of the Council, have both committed to the White Ribbon campaign

Councillor Ross Garrod, Leader of the Council, has already signed up as an Ambassador and Hannah Doody, Chief Executive, is a White Ribbon Champion. To find out more about signing up in either of these roles, go to https://www.whiteribbon.org.uk where you can make the promise. 

Cllr Eleanor Stringer, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Civic Pride, said: “I’m delighted that Merton Council has achieved White Ribbon accreditation and would like to thank the team who have worked tirelessly to help us to this status. All men can make a difference by thinking about their own behaviour and being prepared to call out sexist and harassing behaviour when they see it.  

“Achieving White Ribbon status demonstrates that we are best placed to help our residents in combatting violence against women and girls. It will enhance the skills and knowledge of our workforce in addressing violence at the hands of men in our communities. We look forward to supporting other organisations in our borough to join the White Ribbon movement”  

If you need to access support services please visit: 

Violence against women and girls | Merton Council  

Domestic violence and abuse | Merton Council