The Institute for Sexual Equality’s nationwide “Verbal abuse hurts, too” campaign, a collaboration with Beweging tegen Geweld (an organisation fighting violence) is due to launch on November 25th. This date marks the International Day against violence towards women. The campaign aims to draw attention to both verbal and physical violence perpetrated against women.
In Belgium in 2013, at least 300,000 women suffered physical and/or sexual violence and one in four reported being victims of disparaging or demeaning remarks from their partner or ex-partner in the course of their private life.
The public prosecutor’s department also saw, in 2013, 61,028 cases of violence committed between partners, 24,260 of which were cases of “assault”. This figure represents about 167 cases per day. In 2013, the public prosecutor’s department also recorded 157 cases of either murder or attempted murder, or that involved violence between partners.
The campaign is aimed specifically at the younger male generation. By using shocking slogans related to verbal abuse, the Institute intends to highlight that verbal violence can often have exactly the same consequences as, and also lead to, physical violence.
A hundred events will take place as part of the campaign during the week of November 25th. Various public figures have pledged their support for the campaign by agreeing to take a selfie wearing a campaign T-shirt on November 25th. They will then post this selfie on social media sites, including on www.facebook.com/stoppartnergeweld campaign. Several tools to increase awareness, such as posters, playing cards, coasters, … have been distributed in more than 400 cafés nationwide.