CamdenNewJournal

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Georgia Gould: ‘For many, lockdown at home wasn’t safe – we must end the violence’

'I challenge all of us to listen, to learn, and to use our power to ensure that the next generation of women and girls in Camden can live free of violence and fear'

19 November, 2021 — By Cllr Georgia Gould

Councillor Georgia Gould is among the women writing for this week’s special edition of the CNJ

This month in Camden, the council will report on the findings of our Camden Women’s Forum and hold a public discussion on the impact of gender-based violence against women and girls in our communities.

We will lift up the voices of survivors, social workers and campaigners, and make clear our commitment to doing all we can to tackle misogyny, violence, and harassment in Camden.

The last 18 months have been a distressing reminder of how pervasive misogyny is. A national survey carried out by Women’s Aid found that 64 per cent of victims and survivors said that domestic violence had got worse since the start of the pandemic. For many women and girls, there was no safety at home during each of the lockdowns.

Camden Labour established the Women’s Forum in 2019, delivering our manifesto commitment to explore the ways in which gender-based discrimination and violence against women and girls affects their safety and their opportunities.

The fight for women’s equality continues, and that fight must be led and shaped by the voices of women and girls who face disproportionate risk. Gender discrimination interacts with other forms of prejudice to mean women and girls from ethnic minorities, disabled women, migrant women and LGBT+ women experience increased barriers to accessing advice, support and care when they do experience violence and abuse.

We need a comprehensive national approach to addressing the generational trauma of gender-based violence, long-term funding for specialist services that are led by and for minoritised communities, and a whole-Government commitment to tackling the barriers that prevent women reporting and seeking justice. We need investment in rehabilitation for perpetrators that addresses the root causes of violence and misogyny.

I am a proud feminist, and making Camden a safer, more equal place for women and girls is at the core of why I do my job. I will be proud at council next week to stand alongside campaigners who have made it their life’s work to build communities of care for survivors.

I challenge all of us to listen, to learn, and to use our power to ensure that the next generation of women and girls in Camden can live free of violence and fear.

Cllr Georgia Gould is the leader of Camden Council

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