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100% support for Wiki, White Ribbon Day Ambassador

100% support for Wiki as White Ribbon Day Ambassador

Strong and positive leadership by men is one of the best ways to reduce New Zealand’s shocking domestic violence rates – that’s why the National Network of Stopping Violence Services (NNSVS) 100% endorse the White Ribbon Ambassadors Scheme launched in Manukau city today (Tuesday 15 September 2009).

The international scheme was launched in New Zealand at a ceremony at Friendship House today, when Rugby League star Ruben Wiki was announced as the country’s first White Ribbon Ambassador.

NNSVS National Manager Tauiwi Brian Gardner says he cannot speak highly enough of Ruben who is prepared to take such a public stance against violence to women.

“Ruben has mana from his days as a successful sportsman, even captaining the Kiwis. The fact that he, supported by his family, is prepared to be an ambassador against male violence towards women is awesome because many who followed his league career will follow his lead on this matter as well.

“Also Ruben’s real life experience of violence in the home – he saw his mother being beaten by her partner – only makes him even more committed to the cause of standing up to domestic violence.

Statistics show that Men are charged for assault at five times the rate of women and 95% of protection orders taken out against men.

Gardner says Ruben is also a prime example of positive aggression on the sports field does not need to translate into negative aggression in the home.

”Hard hits on the field do not necessarily mean hard hits at home. He is a true champion in that respect.”

Gardner says we all know friends, family members and workmates struggling with the issue of violence who deserve our support and challenge to change.

“Change is possible. The White Ribbon challenge is to never condone violence to women, it is a challenge that Ruben Wiki has taken on in a very public way and we encourage all New Zealand men to take up that challenge in their own way to enable all women, children and men to live free from violence.”

ENDS

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