Campaign gathers supporters

Stratford, South Taranaki and New Plymouth mayors have pledged their support for the annual White Ribbon campaign, and Taranaki Safe Families Trust is calling for more local men to "leather up" and ride with the annual White Ribbon Motorcycle Ride when it rolls through Taranaki on November 21.

Stratford mayor Neil Volzke sees violence against women as unacceptable. "Both as mayor and as a man I want to play my part in ending this violence."

On average, 14 women die and more than 3500 men are convicted for assaults on women every year, adds New Plymouth mayor Harry Duynhoven. "Those women are our mothers, daughters, sisters, female workmates and colleagues."

South Taranaki mayor Ross Dunlop says the council has always taken violence seriously, and the White Ribbon Campaign is a chance to talk about the issues openly and honestly.

"Violence so often starts in the home and that makes it a community problem. Change needs to occur in every community across New Zealand.

"This is a fantastic opportunity for Taranaki men to stand up and show they're man enough to stop violence towards women," says Marion James, Taranaki Safe Families co-ordinator. "We want attitudes to change and our local men to lead this charge."

White ribbons are available free from the Stratford information centre, library and the council. Pledge your support by wearing the ribbon and by signing the pledge at

- Stratford Press

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