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Global #MeToo movement inspires AWARE’s latest anti-violence campaign

Gender equality group AWARE has launched the “Let’s Unite” campaign to encourage members of the public to begin taking collective action to end violence against women. The campaign follows the #MeToo online movement, which has taken social media by storm with women’s experiences of sexual violence and harassment.

Organised in-house by AWARE, Let’s Unite will run until 10 December 2017 and will be promoted through social media and online channels. Members of the public can overlay their social media profile pictures with the Let’s Unite frame, and post a message of support with the hashtag. Other supporters of Let’s Unite include non-governmental organisations HOME, Project X and Action for AIDS.

Let’s Unite encourages supporters to take pledges for change, and will showcase local efforts to end violence against women through the hashtag #16DaysSG. The campaign was organised in view of the international campaign “16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence”. It kicks off on 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, with an open dialogue “#metoo,#nowwhat” which delves into the reality of violence against women in Singapore and what individuals can do and have done to end it.

The campaign also calls on employers and state leaders to take a stand. Bloomberg, together with TSMP Law Corporation and Catalyse Consulting, AWARE’s corporate training arm, will hold a panel discussion titled “How will you handle your Harveys?”. During the discussion, experts will share best practices for creating a safe work environment and managing workplace harassment.

“When survivors of violence courageously open up about their experiences, we have a responsibility to listen and create a community of support for them that is free of mistrust, blame and shame. We must also do the difficult but important work of transforming our own attitudes to prevent violence against women from happening in the first place,” Anisha Joseph, AWARE’s manager of Sexual Assault Care Centre, said.

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